Islamabad, July 19, 2017 (PPI-OT):The Global Action to prevent and Address Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants (GLO.ACT) launched on Wednesday, 19 July, at the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad. GLO.ACT is a four-year joint initiative by the European Union (EU) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The project, implemented in partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), reaffirms that combating human trafficking and migrant smuggling is of the highest importance for the EU and the United Nations as a whole and UNODC as custodian of relevant convention of transnational organized crime which incorporates protocols of human trafficking and migrant smuggling.
GLO.ACT is a coordinated response to trafficking in persons and the smuggling of migrants and aims to strengthen the criminal justice response in 13 strategically selected countries across Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America Belarus, Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, Kyrgyz Republic, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mali, Morocco, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, South Africa and Ukraine.
On the same day, UNODC also launched a national awareness campaign against trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants, co-funded by Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection and United States Department of State. The campaign utilized different mediums and tools to engage general public and relevant stakeholders in a variety of ways.
In his speech, Mr. Cesar Guedes, Representative, UNODC Pakistan said that the need for international community to join efforts to combat the scourge of modern day slavery which is human trafficking, cannot be greater given the unacceptable loss of life. We have witnessed people trafficked in inhumane conditions by the traffickers across the world. The seriousness of the situation can be gauged by the fact that UN General Assembly and Security Council recently addressed these matters.
Yet a lot remains to be done. Traffickers continue to benefit from weaknesses in our collective criminal justice response. That is why, today, I am pleased to launch GLO.ACT in Pakistan as it specifically aims to strengthen the criminal justice response to trafficking in persons and the smuggling of migrants, as well as launch Public Awareness Campaign to raise awareness about Trafficking in persons and Smuggling of Migrants with the general public.”
Adding to this, Dr. Muhammad Shafique Additional Director General of the Federal Investigation Agency said that: “Notwithstanding the critical importance of all forms of public interventions for curtailing the issue of TIP and SOM, it is crucial to have governments and civil society to work in close partnership in the fight against these crimes”. .” And FIA as a lead agency will do upmost to ensure that these crimes are tackled with full vigour.
The launching ceremony took place in the presence of His Excellency Mr. Jean-François Cautain, Ambassador of the European Union to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, His Excellency Mr. David Hale, Ambassador of the United States of America, Her Excellency, Ms. Nicole Guihot, Acting Deputy High Commissioner, Australian High Commission as well as senior government representatives from provincial line departments, provincial police, academia, media and civil society.
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