Azerbaijan Must Pass New Program against Human Trafficking - Public Association
Azerbaijan, Baku, 13 June / Trend corr K. Zarbaliyeva/ "Public Association of the Azerbaijan Migration Centre suggest the development of a new National Action Plan against human trafficking," say recommendations of the Association addressed to the Azerbaijani Government to further improve struggle against human trafficking.
Azerbaijan's National Action Plan was passed in 2004.
According to the US State Department's human trafficking report for 2008, the situation in Azerbaijan is unsatisfactory. Azerbaijani Government was advised to improve its struggle against trafficking.
The report referred Azerbaijan to the second group of countries - authorities that undertake measures to solve the problem, but these are still insufficient.
The Public Association recommends completing the work to create refuges and aid centres for human trafficking victims, to provide them high-quality juridical assistance at an expense of the Government, to undertake all required measures to make answerable the responsible persons involved in these crimes, as well as to replace the national coordinator with a civil person- who is well experienced and hold a reputation in the society.
The Association said it is important to review the law passed in the human trafficking field, to pass the European Convention on Human Trafficking in Azerbaijan.
The organization considers it significant to reconsider the state policy to reveal people engaged in human trafficking and to make them answerable, as well as to disclose their victims.
Thirty-five human trafficking facts were observed in the country within the five months in 2008. Some 32 human trafficking victims were revealed.
In 2007, 74 facts and 101 victims were revealed.
Women are mainly sent to Turkey and the United Arab Emirates for sexual exploitations. For sexual slavery purposes, children are usually sent to Turkey and to Russia as the labour force.
Javad Shikhaliyev, Chief of the Anti Human Trafficking Department, said that the aforesaid figures were quite different. The real figure is much higher as most of the victims hide these facts.
According to Shikhaliyev, the trafficking victims are mainly between 19 to 35 years old- young persons with higher education and without education.
Shikhaliyev considers the opinion to protect people engaged in the human trafficking by state officials as very absurd.
The Internal Ministry official representative said that centres for rehabilitation of victims are expected to be created. These centres will function soon.
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