WASHINGTON, D.C. /eNewsChannels/ — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton today acknowledged six international activists from Uzbekistan, Hungary, Jordan, Mauritania, Brazil, and Burundi, along with one from the United States, as 2010 Heroes in the Fight Against Modern Slavery, at the release of the U.S. State Department’s 10th annual Trafficking in Persons Report. Published by the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons to assess efforts of governments to combat trafficking in persons, this comprehensive worldwide report encourages partnership and increased determination in the fight against forced labor, sexual exploitation, and modern-day slavery. The 2010 report ranks 177 nations, including a first-time ranking of the United States.

The six international Heroes are in the United States June 13-19 to highlight their work and engage with professional counterparts and the media under the auspices of the International Visitor Leadership Program of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Their program, titled “Combating Trafficking in Persons,” is administered by the nonprofit organization Phelps Stokes on behalf of the Department of State.

In Washington, DC, the Heroes are also attending briefings with members of the Diplomatic Corps and of nongovernmental organizations. On Tuesday, June 15, at 12:30 p.m., the seven heroes will be honored at a reception on Capitol Hill with Members of Congress, hosted by the Helsinki Commission.

In New York City, the Heroes delegation will visit the United Nations and other organizations engaged in combating human trafficking worldwide. On Wednesday, June 16, at 10:00 a.m., the Heroes will join Ambassador-at-Large Luis CdeBaca, who leads the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, in a press briefing at the State Department’s Foreign Press Center. At 1:15 p.m., they will attend a panel discussion titled “Hidden in Plain Sight: The News Media’s Role in Exposing Human Trafficking,” hosted by the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University. Ambassador CdeBaca will deliver keynote remarks and former ABC News correspondent Lynn Sherr will moderate this panel, to be held at the Economic and Social Council Chamber of the United Nations.

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs fosters mutual understanding between the United States and other countries through international educational, cultural, and professional exchanges. The Bureau’s Office of International Visitors manages the International Visitor Leadership Program, which promotes mutual understanding through carefully designed professional visits to the United States for current and emerging foreign leaders.