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OSCE calls for strengthening anti-trafficking cooperation with EU


Maria Grazia Giammarinaro


(OSCE-Brussels).-The OSCE Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, Maria Grazia Giammarinaro, emphasized the need for enhanced cooperation with the European Commission to advance anti-trafficking action in a meeting with European Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmström in Brussels on 3rd February 2011.


"The recently adopted EU Directive on preventing and combating trafficking in human beings, and protecting victims is a benchmark as it addresses in the same context prevention, prosecution, victim assistance and victims' rights before, during and after criminal proceedings, on the new and strong legal basis of the Treaty of Lisbon," said Giammarinaro.


"The challenge is now the full and correct implementation of the new EU legislation."


"The EU Directive adopts the same human rights approach as the OSCE commitments in this area. Therefore we can effectively co-operate to ensure significant improvement of anti-trafficking action in the EU and beyond, across the OSCE region."


Underlining that trafficking in human beings is modern-day slavery occurring on a massive scale, especially in the field of labour exploitation, and a transnational threat to individual and State security, Giammarinaro called for joint efforts to increase the number ofcases brought to justice and the number of victims identified and supported, be they victims of trafficking for sexual or labour exploitation, or any other form of trafficking.


"All countries have to face new challenging tasks. Often many people are victimized in the same case of trafficking for labour exploitation; law enforcement operations and victim-support services have to tackle new and difficult problems, in particular concerning access to justice and remedies, including compensation for all victims," she said.


Giammarinaro also expressed hope that the EU Directive on residence permits for trafficking victims would soon be revised to ensure that all victims, including third country nationals, receive immediate assistance and support.