Qatar committed to combatting trafficking

 07 Dec 2017 - 7:51

Qatar committed to  combatting trafficking
Minister of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs H E Dr Issa bin Saad Al Jafali Al Nuaimi (extreme left) and H E Minister of Public Health Dr Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari (third left) during the 5th Interpol Global Conference on Trafficking in Human Beings and Smuggling of Migrants. Pic: Ibrahim Kutty/The Peninsula

By Mohammed Osman | The Peninsula

Qatar has spared no effort to establish a national legal and institutional framework and to support all national, regional and international efforts to combat crime of human trafficking and associated phenomena such as forced labour, modern slavery and child labour said Minister of Administrative Development, Labor and Social Affairs H E Dr Issa bin Saad Al Jafali Al Nuaimi, who is also Chairman of National Committee for Combatting Human Trafficking. 

Al Nuaimi was addressing 5th INTERPOL Global Conference on Trafficking in Human Beings and Smuggling of Migrants which is attended by more than 300 ministers, parliamentarians, experts from more than 90 countries, international and governmental organisations and civil society from all continents. 

The two-day conference is being organised by INTERPOL in collaboration with the Ministry of Interior and the National Committee for Combating Human Trafficking.

The Minister pointed out that Qatar is one of the biggest donors and supporters to the United Nations Trust Fund for Victims of Human Trafficking since its establishment as well as United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). 

Doha also hosted, in 2015, the 13th UN Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice which adopted a comprehensive approach to fight the crime of human trafficking, in compliance with the Doha Declaration, he added. 

Qatar sponsored an Arab initiative in cooperation with UNODC and the Arab League to build national competencies in the field of combating human trafficking in the Arab states. 

Al Nuaimi added that Qatar supported the international work plan of the UN to fight human trafficking since its endorsement and took a number of legislative actions which criminates all shapes and forms of human trafficking. 

He added that on institutional level the State established the National Committee for Combatting Human Trafficking to unify the efforts of the governmental institutions and the civil society to develop a national plan to combat human trafficking. Qatar joined a number of international treaties, conventions which prohibits this crime as well joined regional and international declarations, conventions and treaties on human rights, children’s rights and women’s rights. 

Dr Al Nuaimi stressed that the success of the international community in combating human trafficking will only be achieved through addressing the real causes of this phenomenon whether social, economic, cultural, political and ideological. 

The conference focus on the essential role that the public and private sectors play in preventing, detecting, reporting, disrupting and ultimately prosecuting those responsible for crimes which have no borders, and no limits.

Participants will explore emerging trends such as trafficking for forced criminality including drug cultivation or pick-pocketing. 

In his keynote address, Vice President for the Americas of INTERPOL’s Executive Committee Todd Shean said: “While our focus will remain on law enforcement and prosecution, we must also strengthen our collective efforts to ensure that victims are protected throughout law enforcement and judicial processes. Only by working in coordinated efforts can we hope to develop concrete, sustainable actions.”

Paul Stanfield, INTERPOL Director for Organized and Emerging Crime, underlined the world police body’s long-standing commitment to tackling trafficking in human beings and the smuggling of migrants.

Stanfield pointed to the recent success of INTERPOL’s Operation Epervier as an example of efficient cross-sector collaboration. 

The operation, which saw the rescue of 500 victims from sexual exploitation and forced labour, as well as the arrest of 40 suspected traffickers, was held simultaneously across five African countries and involved prosecutors, international organizations, social services and NGOs.

The term slavery was used to depict the situation of some migrants in Libya which is a reality. What is happening in many parts of the world is modernisation of human slavery, Stanfield told The Peninsula when asked about a recent report of CNN on selling migrant in Libya.

People looking for better life are being exploited by criminals for money due to lack of security and safety, he added. The case in Libya has been highlighted because it got media attention. Interpol’s top priory is protecting people, highlighting problems working with concerned bodies including law enforcement agencies across the world Stanfield explained. 

He called on developed countries to leverage their support noting that global environment has many problems for a number of different reasons that could be from climate changes or economic pressures and etc. 

Deputy Chairman of National Committee for Combatting Human Trafficking Faisal Al Henzab said Qatar is free of human trafficking and highlighted the State’s political will to promote and protect human rights. It is an strategic option and backbone of Qatar’s comprehensive reform policy, he added. 

Al Henzab said the interest is reflected in the development of the infrastructure for human rights on legislative and institutional levels and has been reiterated in the Qatar National Vision 2030 and the national development strategy that aimed to turn the vision’s goals into reality. 

Al Henzab said Qatar has done in the past few years great efforts on a legislative, institutional and awareness levels to fight human trafficking. 

Al Henzab added that the legislative framework of Qatar to combat human trafficking began with the provisions of the Qatari penal code criminalizing sexual exploitation, prostitution, slavery, slavery-like practices and forced labour.

Al Henzab stressed the National Committee for Combating Human Trafficking has prepared a draft national plan to combat human trafficking 2017-2022.