U.S. Congressman Praises Ukraine for Leading the Way on Human Trafficking
KYIV, Ukraine, June 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ –
Ukraine has become the first nation in Europe to train its airport employees to
identify and rescue victims of human trafficking as part of an international programme to
increase cooperation in the fight against modern day slavery.
Kiev’s proactive role has been praised by U.S. Congressman Chris Smith who was in the
Ukrainian capital to address a conference on trafficking organised by the Ukrainian
Chairmanship of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).
“We are all responsible for ending this dehumanizing crime, but the fact is airline,
hotel and transportation professionals are in a unique position to identify potential
victims to get them the help they need,” said Smith, who is the OSCE Parliamentary
Assembly Special Representative on Human Trafficking Issues.
Ukrainian aviation employees Monday took part in an innovative workshop, which trained
them to identify potential victims of human trafficking. It was hosted by Ukraine’s
Ministry of Infrastructure and attended by the humanitarian organization Airline
Ambassadors, Ukraine’s Aviation Administration and Interpol.
“I commend Ukraine for the work it has done today to focus attention on the 600,000 to
800,000 trafficking victims who are moved across borders each year and who could be
rescued in transit if airline and other transportation personnel were appropriately
trained and law enforcement ready to intervene,” Smith said.
He added that as a result of a single workshop “hundreds, maybe thousands, more lives
will be saved.”
Ukraine has said it is committed to working with international organisations in a wide
range of areas as part of its drive towards closer integration with Europe. As well as
cooperation on human trafficking it is working with its neighbours in the area of customs
and excise, international property rights and energy issues.
Kiev hopes its reform agenda – in line with international best practices – will enable
it to meet the criteria of its Association Agreement with the EU, which it expects to sign
at the Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius in November.
The issue of human trafficking is also on the agenda for the OSCE when it meets at the
end of the month for its annual session, to be held this year in Istanbul.
SOURCE Ukraine Monitor