Press Release —Local July 25, 2019

Strengthening Partnerships for Combatting Human Trafficking in Sri Lanka: Commemorating the World Day against Human Trafficking

Strengthening Partnerships for Combatting Human Trafficking in Sri Lanka: Commemorating the World Day against Human Trafficking

Human Trafficking is an organized crime committed both within the country and across borders. It is an offence affecting men, women and children and is a punishable crime under the penal code of Sri Lanka. Trafficking can take different forms including, but not limited to, labour exploitation and commercial sexual exploitation. Despite sustained measures taken at the international and national levels, human trafficking remains an issue in Sri Lanka. The complexity of the crime, difficulty in identifying victims, challenges in prosecuting perpetrators and the ever-changing nature of the crime itself, requires a more collective and comprehensive response from the government, civil society and other stakeholders.

With this objective, a group of development partners implementing counter trafficking projects have come together to coordinate the counter trafficking efforts in Sri Lanka with a view to create awareness among the public and maximizing the impact of activities being implemented. This group of development partners includes International Organization for Migration, Save the Children, The Asia Foundation, International Labour Organization, Helvetas Swiss Inter-cooperation, and United Nations office on Drugs and Crime.

To commemorate the World Day against human trafficking, which falls on July 30 every year, the development partners are organizing a public event in Colombo. This event aims to bring together the key members of the National Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force (comprising of representatives from Government institutions), the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and the development partners on a common platform to create a dialogue on prevention, protection and prosecution aspects related to human trafficking and to strengthen partnerships to counter the scourge of human trafficking.

This event will provide an opportunity to share information about the multitude of interventions being implemented by the development partners to counter human trafficking in Sri Lanka and to identify the gaps and challenges in combating the crime of human trafficking. It is believed that this event will pave way for strengthened collaboration between government stakeholders, development partners and the civil society to combat human trafficking in Sri Lanka.

This event has been made possible with the contributions made by the United States Department of State and the UK Immigration Enforcement.

For more information please contact: IOM Sri Lanka and the Maldives. Tel: +94 11 211 2600 ll E-mail: iomcolombo@iom.int