Pakistan calls for ‘coordinated’ global approach to combat human trafficking

“Pakistan continues to fight against organized crime, including human trafficking, migrant smuggling”

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UNITED NATIONS, Pakistan on Tuesday called for a unified coordinated, consistent and equitable global approach to end human trafficking that affects all regions of the world. Speaking in the General Assembly’s high-level meeting reviewing progress in implementing the 2010 United Nations Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons, Pakistan’s Deputy permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Aamir Khan, said that Islamabad continues to fight all kind of organized crime, including human trafficking and migrant smuggling.

He further noted that, Global Plan of Action can achieve this objective; Ambassador Aamir Khan welcomed the convening of this high-level meeting of the General Assembly and termed it as “a timely opportunity to assess the progress made in implementation of the United Nations Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons, identify the obstacles and find appropriate solutions”. “Human trafficking affects all regions of the world. The criminals involved prey on the weakest and the most vulnerable” he said. Deliberating on the core reasons of the issue, he said that “In recent years, proliferating conflicts, insecurity and economic deprivation have combined to compel millions of men, women and children to leave their homes to seek physical safety and economic security in other lands. Often, they are at the mercy of organized criminal groups and networks”. “The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated global poverty and inequalities. Millions of people are at greater risk of being trafficked for sexual exploitation, forced labor and other crimes” he added. He reaffirmed Pakistan’s continued resolve saying, “Pakistan continues to fight all kind of organized crime, including human trafficking and migrant smuggling”. He informed on Pakistan’s efforts in this regard: “In partnership with UNODC and other international partners, our law enforcement authorities have made significant progress in addressing this challenge”. “We have developed a Strategic National Action Plan (2021-2025) to combat trafficking in persons; formulated detailed Rules and migrant smuggling laws for the prevention of trafficking; adopted standard operating procedures for victim support and referral mechanisms; and, strengthened the technical capacities of immigration and border management officials to prevent irregular migration and curb trafficking in persons and migrant smuggling” he informed. “The adoption of the Global Compact on Migration by the United Nations marked the beginning of a new era of migration governance, dialogue and international cooperation. “Despite the current challenges, the international community can draw on the Global Compact to promote safe, orderly and regular migration with greater inclusion and sustainability” he hoped. “At the same time, opening up additional avenues for legal migration is one way to reduce the “demand” for human smuggling and trafficking services and meet migration related SDGs” he added. Pakistan will continue to promote its balanced and effective implementation: he concluded. Member States and observers delivered their national statements in accordance with General Assembly resolution 74/176 of 18 December 2019, “Improving the Coordination of Efforts against Trafficking in Persons” and resolution 75/283 of 7 June 2021, “Modalities, format and organization of the high-level meeting of the General Assembly on the appraisal of the United Nations Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons”, a high-level meeting of the General Assembly convened on 22-23 November 2021 to appraise progress achieved in the implementation of the Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons (resolution 64/293). This appraisal occurs on a quadrennial basis, and provides the opportunity to acknowledge achievements, and reflect on existing gaps and challenges, both in implementation and scope, and consequently on the way forward in the fight against trafficking in persons.

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