Combating Human Trafficking on the Agenda of the Minsk International Workshop

A two-day workshop on observing various aspects of human rights in the course of combating human trafficking for competent authorities of the Member States of the Group of Friends United against Human Trafficking (Group of Friends) and international organizations opened in Minsk on 29 May. During the workshop the participants will discuss unified approaches to implementation of international standards in protecting the rights of victims of trafficking, improvement of cooperation between law enforcement agencies of the Member States of the Group of Friends and international organizations, and ways to optimize observation of human rights in the course of preventing and combating human trafficking.

A two-day workshop on observing various aspects of human rights in the course of combating human trafficking for competent authorities of the Member States of the Group of Friends United against Human Trafficking (Group of Friends) and international organizations opened in Minsk on 29 May.

During the workshop the participants will discuss unified approaches to implementation of international standards in protecting the rights of victims of trafficking, improvement of cooperation between law enforcement agencies of the Member States of the Group of Friends and international organizations, and ways to optimize observation of human rights in the course of preventing and combating human trafficking.

Mr Yury Fedotov, UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), and Ms Marcia Kran, Director of the Research and Right to Development Division of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), take part in the workshop.

Mr. Sanaka Samarasinha, UN Resident Coordinator/UNDP Resident Representative in Belarus, gave a welcome address to the participants at the opening ceremony. ““Combating trafficking in persons is an important priority of the United Nations Development Assistance Framework for Belarus (UNDAF) 2011–2015. The UN and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) has a history of working with Belarus to prevent and address the social consequences of human trafficking””, – said Mr. Samarasinha.

The workshop can also be considered as the launch of UNDP’s latest project called “Combating Trafficking in Human Beings: New Challenges and Threats” that will address the trafficking issues affecting child and adult victims of both sexes, as both men and women are being victimized. It is expected that the new project will enhance the effectiveness of the national governance system. In particular, the information exchange system and the system of coordinating joint activities of law enforcement authorities of Belarus and neighboring countries in the field of combating international trafficking will be optimized.

The workshop is organized by the Academy of the Interior Ministry of the Republic of Belarus and the United Nations Development Programme in Belarus following the initiative of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

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