V. Country Narratives - Tier 3
Albania (Tier 3)
Albania is a source and transit country for trafficking. Trafficking victims are mostly women from Albania, Moldova, and Romania who are trafficked for sexual exploitation to Italy, Greece, Western Europe, Belgium, and the Netherlands.
The Government of Albania does not meet the minimum standards, and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking. It has taken steps to do so, but its efforts are limited by a lack of resources and corruption at all levels of government. The Penal Code prohibits trafficking in persons, and penalties are commensurate with those of rape. The Government investigates and prosecutes trafficking, and there were 144 prosecutions in 2000 for violating the trafficking law. The Government is working to establish an anti-trafficking center in Vlora. The Government provides minimal support for small-scale anti-trafficking education, but otherwise supports no prevention or protection programs. Foreign victims who agree to testify are exempt from deportation until the conclusion of criminal proceedings. The Government does not assist repatriated Albanian victims.
Bahrain (Tier 3)
Bahrain is a destination country for trafficked persons. There are reports that some foreign workers are recruited for employment on the basis of fraudulent contracts and then forced into domestic servitude or sexual exploitation. Workers from the Philippines, Ethiopia, India, Russia, and Belarus have reported being forced into domestic servitude and sexual exploitation.
The Government of Bahrain does not meet the minimum standards and the Government has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking. The Government does not recognize that trafficking is a problem because expatriate workers travel to Bahrain voluntarily. The law does not specifically prohibit trafficking in persons; however, there are other statutes that can be used to prosecute traffickers forcing women into sexual exploitation. Labor laws do not protect foreign workers. The Government is not devoting resources to combat trafficking in persons. Victims of trafficking may seek assistance from their embassies. The Government does not provide assistance to victims. The Government has signed and ratified the following international instruments: ILO Convention 182, the Sale of Children Protocol and the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children Supplementing the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime.
Belarus (Tier 3)
Belarus is both a source and a transit country for trafficked persons, primarily women. Young women are trafficked through Belarus from Russia, Ukraine, and Lithuania to other counties in Europe, primarily Germany and Poland.
The Government of Belarus does not meet the minimum standards due to a lack of resources and corruption. The new Criminal Code, which went into effect January 1, 2001, penalizes trafficking in persons for the purpose of sexual or other kinds of exploitation, as well as the hiring of persons for sexual or other exploitation. The penalty for trafficking is substantially less than that for rape or forcible sexual assault. At the time of this report, there was one open criminal case, and 12 cases had been proven. In theory the Government has programs to assist victims of trafficking and provide witnesses; however, in practice this does not occur. Victims are detained and/or jailed until the investigation identifies them as victims, and can be prosecuted for violations of other laws. The Ministry of Internal Affairs conducted one seminar on trafficking in October 1999 and another in April 2000.
Bosnia-Herzegovina (Tier 3)
Bosnia is a major destination and transit country for women trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation from Eastern Europe and the New Independent States, especially Moldova, Romania, and Ukraine.
Neither the national government of Bosnia, nor the entity governments of the Federation and the Republic of Srpska meet the minimum standards for combating trafficking in persons. The international organizations and the NGO's present in Bosnia, with the participation of many Bosnian officials, conduct most of the anti-trafficking efforts in the country. The central government's ability to deter trafficking is limited by budgetary constraints, minimal border controls, inadequate criminal laws, and corruption. Some police and judicial authorities tacitly accept or actively facilitate trafficking. Neither of the entities has a law that specifically prohibits trafficking, although prosecutors can use charges of assault, provision of false documents, procuring and promoting prostitution. The courts have convicted at least two traffickers. Bosnia has an inter-agency anti-trafficking task force, which conducted a raid in the spring of 2001 on brothels suspected of having trafficking victims. Bosnia supports no prevention or protection measures and routinely has charged victims with prostitution and illegal residency before deporting them.
Burma (Tier 3)
Burma is a country of origin for trafficking of persons, primarily of women and girls, to Thailand and other countries as factory workers and household servants, and for sexual exploitation. There also is internal trafficking of women and girls from areas of extreme poverty to areas where prostitution is common. Men and boys reportedly are trafficked to other countries, primarily to Thailand, for sexual exploitation and for other purposes, but this appears to be a small percentage of the overall flow. In addition to Thailand, Burmese adults are trafficked to China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, and Japan. While most observers believe the number of victims is at least several thousand per year, there are no reliable statistics available on the total number of trafficked persons.
The Government does not meet the minimum standards, and has not yet made significant efforts to combat the worsening problem of trafficking in persons. The Government, while recently acknowledging that the problem of international trafficking exists, has not publicly acknowledged the magnitude of the problem. Corruption among local government officials is widespread and reportedly includes complicity in the trafficking of persons. The Government for years has systematically used forced labor for the development of infrastructure and state-run agricultural and commercial ventures, for forced portering to move military equipment and supplies throughout the country, and for mine clearing activities. The Government has not committed sufficient resources or demonstrated the political will to combat trafficking. Moreover, it has not collected meaningful data on the incidence of trafficking, made any serious effort to arrest or prosecute traffickers, or facilitated the repatriation of trafficking victims. There are no anti-trafficking laws. The Government does not work with international NGO's or neighboring governments to address the problem.
Democratic Republic of the Congo (Tier 3)
The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is a significant country of origin for trafficking in persons. Women are trafficked to Europe, mainly France and Belgium, for sexual exploitation, and boys are trafficked by Ugandan troops and rebel groups for forced and voluntary military service. Ugandan and Rwandan soldiers, in addition to Congolese Rally for Democracy (RCD) rebels, reportedly abducted many Congolese women and girls from the villages they raided. Insurgent groups from neighboring countries have abducted a number of Congolese children to be labor or sex slaves, or to serve in the military.
The Government of the DRC does not meet the minimum standards; the Government has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking, due in part to lack of resources or information and unwillingness to acknowledge there is a significant problem, and because much of the country's trafficking problem occurs in areas controlled by rebel groups and foreign armies. There are no anti-trafficking laws; however, laws against unlawful imprisonment and running brothels could be used against traffickers. The Government has not vigorously investigated or prosecuted trafficking cases. There is no known complicity in trafficking by government officials. The Government has no resources for training; however, it permits training of officials by the Government of France and by NGO's. The Government does not coordinate with other countries on trafficking issues and has no funding for protection services. Victims are not prosecuted. The Government has signed but not ratified ILO Convention 182 on the Worst Forms of Child Labor and the protocols on sale of the children and trafficking.
Gabon (Tier 3)
Gabon is a destination country for trafficked persons, primarily children from west and central Africa (specifically Benin and Togo) for domestic servitude. Women and children are also trafficked to Gabon for sexual exploitation.
The Government of Gabon does not meet the minimum standards and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking, due in part to resource constraints. The Government acknowledges that trafficking in persons is a problem, but is limited by a lack of resources and porous borders. The law does not specifically prohibit trafficking; however, traffickers can be prosecuted under laws prohibiting exploitation, abandonment and mistreatment of women. The Government does not actively investigate cases of trafficking and has not prosecuted any cases against traffickers. The Government has an interministerial committee comprised of representatives from the Labor, Justice, Foreign Affairs and Family Ministries charged with anti-trafficking programs. The Government does not support programs aimed at the prevention of trafficking, and has neither a policy nor resources to provide assistance to trafficking victims. Trafficking victims are not detained or deported. The Government has an informal cooperative relationship with NGO's providing services to victims. The Government cooperates informally with other governments on trafficking cases. Gabon hosted a sub-regional seminar on child trafficking in 2000. In January 2001, the Government sponsored a conference for local officials and NGO's on combating trafficking in persons. The Government ratified ILO Convention 182.
Greece (Tier 3)
Greece is a transit and destination country for trafficking. Most victims are women who are trafficked for sexual exploitation through Greece to Western Europe from Ukraine, Russia, Bulgaria, Albania, and Yugoslavia.
The Government of Greece does not meet the minimum standards; and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking. The Government has established an inter-ministerial committee for trafficking in human beings, but has not yet acknowledged publicly that trafficking is a problem. There is no law that addresses all forms of severe trafficking, although the Penal Code prohibits slavery, pandering, and pimping. Trafficking cases rarely are brought to trial, and sentences are light. Corruption among police and border control is a major problem; the police bureau of internal affairs has successfully investigated a number of cases of police misbehavior. The Government signed the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime and the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children. The Government has not sponsored any significant protection or prevention efforts, other than a hotline for battered women and limited funding for the International Organization for Migration to assist in the voluntary return of victims in 2000. Greek officials met with German, Italian, and Albanian ministers in the summer of 2000 to discuss creating a regional center to handle trafficking in persons. Greece maintains tight controls on non-EU citizens' entry.
Indonesia (Tier 3)
Indonesia is a source country for domestic and internationally trafficked persons, primarily young women and girls. Indonesians are trafficked to Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Malaysia, Brunei, the Persian Gulf countries, Australia, Korea, and Japan; and there are reports that they are trafficked to Europe and the United States. The victims of domestic and international trafficking are targeted for sexual exploitation and forced labor. Some observers estimate that 20 percent of Indonesia's 5 million migrant laborers have been trafficked. Indonesia is also a transit country for alien smuggling to Australia from various countries, including China, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, although it is not clear how many of these persons actually are trafficked.
The Government of Indonesia does not meet the minimum standards and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking; however, officials realize trafficking exists, that it is worsening, and that the Government must confront the problem. Indonesia is undergoing a transition to democracy and is handicapped by weak legislation and law enforcement, inadequate government institutions, and widespread corruption. Considerable circumstantial evidence indicates that some civilian, military, and police officials are involved in trafficking. The Ministry of Women's Empowerment (MOWE) is to coordinate a national anti-trafficking council comprised of both governmental and non-governmental entities. There is no specific law that prohibits trafficking in persons. Although related laws can be used against traffickers, the maximum penalties are significantly less than those for rape. NGO's actively provide assistance to returned victims, but they do not receive funding from the Government. In the past, government cooperation with NGO's was poor, but it has increased significantly. For example, NGO's and provincial government authorities have taken joint action to remove children from offshore fishing platforms in Sumatra. The MOWE operates help desks at international airports for returning victims and has sought NGO assistance for these. In addition, government officials from various agencies have begun to meet with NGO's to discuss practical measures for countering trafficking.
Israel (Tier 3)
Israel is a destination country for trafficked persons, primarily women. Women are trafficked to Israel from the New Independent States (specifically Moldova, Russia, and Ukraine), Brazil, Turkey, South Africa, and some countries in Asia.
The Government of Israel does not meet the minimum standards for combating trafficking in persons, and has not yet made significant efforts to combat the problem, although it has begun to take some steps to do so. The Government recognizes that trafficking in persons is a problem, but devotes limited resources to combating it. NGO's and some concerned government officials have criticized the Government for failing to undertake vigorous efforts against trafficking, especially given the occasional violent methods of traffickers and the significant numbers of women who are trafficked into the country. In June 2000, the Knesset amended a 1997 prostitution law to prohibit the buying or selling of persons, or forcing a person to leave their country of residence to engage in prostitution. The penalties for rape and violation of the 1997 prostitution law require roughly a doubling of the sentence if the victim is a minor. The Government has convicted one trafficker under the new legislation. The Government has provided training to immigration officials at Ben Gurion airport. The Government has not formally begun cooperation with other governments on trafficking cases, but has worked with Ukrainian officials on one trafficking case. The Government has not conducted anti-trafficking information campaigns or other efforts aimed at prevention. Little protection is provided to trafficked persons. Victims of trafficking are detained, jailed in a special women's prison separate from other female prisoners, and deported. Victims who are willing to testify against traffickers may be granted relief from immediate deportation, but the Government does not actively encourage victims to raise charges against traffickers. Israeli NGO's have encouraged victims to take legal action. Some victims have accused individual police officers of complicity with brothel owners and traffickers. The Government provides limited funding to NGO's for assistance to victims.
Kazakhstan (Tier 3)
Kazakhstan is a country of origin and transit for trafficked persons, primarily young women for prostitution. Women are trafficked to a number of countries including the United Arab Emirates, Greece, Turkey, Israel, and South Korea. Forced laborers from neighboring Kyrgyzstan also are trafficked to Kazakhstan.
The Government of Kazakhstan does not meet the minimum standards to combat trafficking in persons and is limited by lack of resources and difficulty monitoring its borders. The Government recognizes trafficking as a problem. The issue has been left primarily to NGO's and international organizations. Corruption at the lower levels of law enforcement may contribute to the problem, and the Government is investigating border officials suspected of complicity with traffickers. There is no specific law on trafficking. Investigations are conducted under a criminal code article prohibiting recruitment for sexual or other exploitation through deception, which is difficult to prosecute since deception must be proved. Penalties are commensurate with the penalties for rape or sexual assault. There is no assistance to victims or mechanism for civil court action. Four trafficking-related investigations were ongoing at the time of this report. In addition, the authorities indicted members of a trafficking ring in June 2000, but the case has not yet come to trial. In 1999 the Government's National Commission on Women's and Family Issues declined to include trafficking in its list of priorities. However, together with the International Organization for Migration, it held a conference on trafficking in November 2000 and then convinced the Prime Minister to establish an inter-agency commission on trafficking, which has not yet been assigned a chairperson.
Lebanon (Tier 3)
Lebanon is a destination country for internationally trafficked persons, primarily women. Women from Ethiopia travel to Lebanon, in the belief that they will work as domestics and have reported being forced into domestic servitude and sexual exploitation. Women from the New Independent States (specifically Russia, Ukraine, and Moldova) have reported being forced into sexual exploitation.
The Government of Lebanon does not meet the minimum standards and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking in persons. Trafficking in persons is not perceived by the Government to be a problem in Lebanon. There are no laws that specifically prohibit trafficking in persons, slavery, or exploitation, although the law prohibits unlicensed prostitution. The Government has not signed or ratified ILO Convention 182, the Sale of Children Protocol, the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime or the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons. Labor violations and other mistreatment against third country nationals working as domestics, some of whom are reportedly trafficking victims, occur on a wide scale. Third country nationals are excluded from the Labor Code and therefore are not afforded legal protection. The Government does not provide assistance to victims of trafficking or to NGO's.
Malaysia (Tier 3)
Malaysia is both a source and destination country for trafficked persons. Young women from primarily Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines are trafficked into Malaysia for sexual exploitation. Small numbers of young Malaysian women, primarily ethnic Chinese, are trafficked to Japan, Canada, the United States and Taiwan, also for sexual exploitation.
The Government of Malaysia does not yet meet the minimum standards, and faces serious impediments to taking significant steps to combat the problem of trafficking in persons. Efforts to date have focused on eradicating prostitution and illegal immigration. There is no law that specifically prohibits trafficking in persons, although laws that might be used against traffickers have penalties that can be more severe than those for sexual assault. The Government considers trafficking to be an illegal immigration and prostitution problem and treats foreign victims of trafficking as illegal immigrants. The Government has not prosecuted any cases against traffickers. There is no evidence of complicity in trafficking by government authorities; however, there have been allegations of some low-level corruption. There are active NGO's that provide assistance to trafficking victims. They maintain one shelter that provides counseling and medical and legal referrals, but the Government does not appear to support financially the work of NGO's. The Government sometimes sends trafficked women who have been victims of physical abuse to either an NGO shelter or to a shelter for battered women. Repatriated Malaysian victims are eligible for public assistance and at least one community-based organization offers services such as counseling to victims. The difficulty of monitoring the country's maritime borders with Indonesia and the Philippines, two major sources of trafficked persons, has hampered the Government's efforts to combat trafficking.
Pakistan (Tier 3)
Pakistan is a source, transit, and destination country for an increasing number of trafficked persons. Women and children are trafficked for purposes of sexual exploitation, bonded labor, and domestic servitude to the Middle East. Pakistan is a source country for young boys who are kidnapped or bought and sent to work as camel jockeys in the Gulf States. Women and children are trafficked from East Asian countries and Bangladesh through Pakistan to the Middle East. Pakistan serves as a destination point for women who are trafficked from Bangladesh, Burma, Afghanistan, and the Central Asian States. There also is evidence of trafficking within Pakistan.
The Government of Pakistan does not yet fully meet the minimum standards and the Government has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking, due to pervasive corruption, lack of information and data on the problem, and a severe lack of resources. The Constitution prohibits slavery and forced labor, and asserts the inviolability of dignity of man and the equality of all citizens; however, current domestic law does not specifically address the issue of trafficking in persons. The Hudood ordinances criminalize extramarital sexual relations and place a burden on female rape victims because testimony of female victims and witnesses carry no legal weight. If a woman brings charges of rape to court and the case cannot be proved, the court automatically takes the rapes victim's allegations as confession of her own complicity and acknowledgment of consensual adultery. These laws discourage trafficking victims from bringing forward charges, and many trafficking victims are detained, jailed, and prosecuted for violations of Hudood ordinances and illegal status. The Government does not provide direct assistance to victims but does provide legal assistance and funding for NGO's that assist victims.
Qatar (Tier 3)
Qatar is a destination country for trafficked persons. Boys are trafficked from Pakistan and Bangladesh to Qatar to work as camel jockeys. Women from East Asia, South Asia, the former Soviet Union, and Africa travel to Qatar to work as domestics and have reported being forced into domestic servitude and sexual exploitation.
The Government of Qatar does not meet the minimum standards and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking. The law prohibits trafficking in persons and prostitution. However, the Government does not actively investigate or prosecute traffickers. The Government repatriates victims of trafficking upon discovering their presence. The Government does not provide assistance to victims, nor does it support public awareness campaigns.
Romania (Tier 3)
Romania is primarily a country of origin and transit for trafficking women to Turkey, Italy, Greece, and the Balkans for sexual exploitation. To a lesser extent, men are trafficked to Greece for agricultural labor.
The Government of Romania does not meet the minimum standards but has recently begun high-level efforts to combat trafficking. Due to a lack of resources and low-level corruption, many local Government officials regard trafficking as a low priority and treat victims as social outcasts. Although Romania has no specific anti-trafficking law, other laws prohibit elements of trafficking, such as pimping and rape. In April 2001, the Government appointed a national coordinator to combat trafficking, and a recently created anti-trafficking squad has arrested three traffickers. In addition to sponsoring a regional international conference to combat trafficking in May 2001, the Government also established an interministerial commission to draft an anti-trafficking law. The Government provided the International Organization for Migration with a location for a shelter in Bucharest, but it does not provide direct assistance to victims.
Russia (Tier 3)
Russia is primarily a source country for women trafficked for prostitution to Western Europe, and to a lesser extent, the Middle East, North America, and North Asia. Trafficking also occurs within Russia.
The Government of Russia does not meet the minimum standards. It has done little to combat the problem of trafficking, primarily due to lack of resources, training and adequate legislation. The Government has made a dramatic about face in the last year and has recently acknowledged trafficking as a problem. Local and regional governments vary in their response, some regions make efforts to respond to complaints and employ creative legal means to try to prosecute traffickers, while some still are reluctant to admit the problem or to devote scarce resources to combating it. Russia has no legislation specifically criminalizing trafficking of adults; and although the penal code prohibits aspects of trafficking, prosecuting traffickers for a criminal offence with the existing code is difficult. Many officials argue that the problem is beyond their purview because the victims leave Russia voluntarily for economic reasons and because the violence and abuse of trafficking in women usually occurs outside Russia's borders, leaving little to prosecute within Russia aside from fraud. However, law enforcement officials do investigate and prosecute trafficking in children. Trafficking victims have found assistance in NGO and government-sponsored domestic violence crisis centers. Otherwise, the Government sponsors no trafficking prevention or protection programs. The Government cooperates internationally on trafficking cases and is working closely with the U.S. and other countries to develop its expertise against trafficking. Russia was one of the first signatories to the UN Convention Against Transnational Crime and its Anti-Trafficking Protocol.
Saudi Arabia (Tier 3)
Saudi Arabia is a destination country for trafficked persons. Millions of expatriates come to Saudi Arabia to work on the basis of contracts with their employers stipulating their salaries, work conditions, and job responsibilities. Some employers do not fulfill the terms of the contracts; a limited number of employees are then prevented from leaving their workplace. Workers from Bangladesh, Thailand, India, the Philippines, Indonesia, and the Horn of Africa have reported being forced into domestic servitude and sexual exploitation.
The Government of Saudi Arabia does not meet the minimum standards and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking, although the Government is attempting to reduce the number of expatriate workers in the country. The Government does not believe that trafficking is a problem because expatriate workers travel to Saudi Arabia voluntarily. The Government formally abolished slavery by royal decree in 1962; however, there are no laws specifically related to trafficking. The Government has an extensive system of labor courts that enforce the terms of work contracts. However, some workers are exempt from labor law, including farmers, herdsmen, and domestic servants. Saudi sponsors exercise considerable control over their employees, and are required by law to hold the passports of their employees. A sponsor's permission is required for an employee to leave the country and travel within Saudi Arabia. Maids who are victims of trafficking may attempt to seek assistance from their embassies, several of which provide safe houses where maids may stay while awaiting a resolution of their cases. The Government also operates safe houses for domestic employees. Domestic servants who attempt to flee their place of employment are sometimes detained and often deported.
South Korea (Tier 3)
South Korea is a country of origin and transit for trafficking in persons. Young female Koreans are trafficked primarily for sexual exploitation, mainly to the United States, but also to other Western countries and Japan. Female aliens from many countries, primarily Chinese women, are trafficked through Korea to the United States and many other parts of the world. In addition to trafficking through the air, much transit traffic occurs in South Korean territorial waterways by ship.
While South Korea is a leader in the region on human rights and democracy generally, the Government has done little to combat this relatively new and worsening problem of trafficking in persons. Although it does prosecute alien smuggling activities such as visa fraud and possession or sale of fraudulent civil documents, there are no laws that specifically address trafficking. There are statutes against kidnapping and sale or purchase of sexual services with a juvenile, and maximum penalties for these are commensurate with those for rape. Although corruption occurs, there is no evidence that government officials are involved in trafficking in persons. Aliens are treated as immigration violators and deported. No government assistance is available for trafficking victims or to support NGO's involved in assisting trafficking victims.
Sudan (Tier 3)
Sudan is a both a destination country for trafficked persons and a country in which internal trafficking in persons is widespread. Internal trafficking in Sudan generally is initiated by government-affiliated militias or raiders as part of a strategy against the rebel forces of the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA). The militias or raiders abduct women and children as remuneration for their services and keep some of those abducted for domestic servitude, forced labor, or as sex slaves; others are given to relatives and fellow tribespeople for similar purposes. In addition to the slavery perpetrated by Sudanese actors, during the last 10 years the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), a Ugandan rebel group, has kidnapped Ugandan children, taken them to southern Sudan, and forced them to become soldiers or sex slaves.
The Government of Sudan does not meet the minimum standards to combat trafficking in persons and the Government has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking. The Government tolerates, and sometimes encourages, such activities because they are seen as contributing to the Government's war effort by providing compensation to raiders and militias for protecting troops and by disrupting and terrorizing southern communities. The Government of Sudan in the past has supported the LRA, although the Government agreed to cease supporting the LRA in December 1999 and has taken steps in this direction. There are no laws specifically against trafficking. Laws against rape, abduction, and unlawful detention are part of the 1991 Penal Code, but the Government has made no efforts to identify or prosecute traffickers or others who have committed criminal acts against abductees. In 1996 the Government established the Special Commission to Investigate Slavery and Disappearance in response to a resolution passed by the UN General Assembly in 1995. The Commission technically still is functioning but has yet to produce a final report. In May 1998, the Government formed the Committee for the Eradication of the Abduction of Women and Children (CEAWAC). CEWAC oversees traditional chiefs who attempt to identify and locate abducted individuals. Since the creation of CEAWAC, about 340 abducted individuals have been returned to their homes. The Government has expended limited resources in identifying abductees and placing them in relocation centers or with relatives prior to their repatriation.
Turkey (Tier 3)
Turkey is a destination and transit country for trafficking of persons. Women and girls, mostly from Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia, are trafficked to or through Turkey.
The Government of Turkey does not meet the minimum standards and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking; however, the Government does acknowledge a problem of trafficking in the country and has taken some steps in response. There is no specific law prohibiting trafficking; however, prosecutors can use various provisions of the Penal Code against incitement to prostitution, rape, compulsory labor, child labor, and document fraud. According to government statistics, the authorities arrested 850 members of organized gangs for trafficking during 2000. Statistics on prosecutions are unavailable because there is no single statute involved. The Government does not actively support prevention or protection programs, and there are no NGO's working on the issue. The Government generally deports victims, along with other illegal aliens, within a few weeks of their detention. Law enforcement officials cooperated with film teams from Ukraine and Moldova in making educational documentaries designed to discourage women and girls from those countries from being lured to Turkey by traffickers. The Turkish National Police receive special training, funded by the EU and administered by UNHCR, in areas such as visa fraud, passport forgery, and illegal entries. The Government cooperates with other countries and international organizations in the investigation and prosecution of trafficking. The Government has signed various conventions on trafficking, including the UN Convention Against Transnational Crime Protocol on trafficking, which is not yet ratified, and ratified ILO Convention 182, in early 2001. Turkey actively participates in the Stability Pact Working Group on Trafficking.
United Arab Emirates (Tier 3)
United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a destination country for trafficked persons. Boys are trafficked from Pakistan and Bangladesh for use as camel jockeys in UAE's camel racing industry. Women are trafficked from the New Independent States, Africa, Iran, and Eastern Europe for sexual exploitation. Men and women from South and East Asia travel to UAE to work as domestics and have reported being forced into indentured or domestic servitude or sexual exploitation.
The Government of United Arab Emirates does not meet the minimum standards and has not yet made significant efforts to combat trafficking in persons. There is no law specifically prohibiting trafficking in persons; however, traffickers can be punished under laws prohibiting child smuggling and prostitution. Forced or compulsory labor is illegal, and labor regulations prohibit the employment of persons under 15 years of age. The Government has arrested, detained, and deported those involved in child smuggling and prostitution. The Government prohibited the use of children under the age of 15 as camel jockeys in 1993, but the Camel Racing Association, not the Government, is responsible for enforcing these rules. The authorities have prosecuted foreign child smugglers, but do not investigate citizens involved in smuggling. The authorities, working together with foreign governments and NGO's, have provided shelter for and assistance with the repatriation of underage camel jockeys. Victims of trafficking may seek shelter in their embassies; the Government of UAE does not provide assistance to victims. Women arrested as prostitutes are detained, deported, and blacklisted from reentering the country. The Government restricts granting visas to UAE to single women who are 40 years of age and younger.
The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Tier 3)
NOTE: The report on the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia is discussed in three separate sections on Serbia, Kosovo, and Montenegro and addresses the trafficking situations in each of these entities. Since federal authority was exercised effectively only over the Republic of Serbia throughout the year, the human rights situations in Kosovo and Montenegro are dealt with in separate sections following this report.
The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia is a transit and destination country for women trafficked from Eastern Europe, especially Romania, and the New Independent States, including Moldova, Ukraine, and Russia. According to an International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights report, women often are trafficked to Belgrade, from where they are then taken to other parts of Serbia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Italy, Greece, Germany, the Netherlands, and other Western European countries, often for sexual exploitation.
Serbia is also a source country for women trafficked to Italy, Greece, Cyprus, Germany, and the Netherlands. There are reports that Roma women and children also are trafficked to Italy, where the females are used in the sex industry and the male children for begging and stealing. The Yugoslav Government, the Serbian Government, and the Montenegrin Government, do not meet the minimum standards and are not making significant efforts to combat trafficking. In Serbia no specific law prohibits trafficking; however, the criminal code prohibits the "illegal transport of others" across borders for "lucrative purposes," and recruiting, inducing, inciting, or luring females into prostitution. Penalties range from 3 months to 5 years in prison and the confiscation of property, and 10 years if the victim is underage. There were no reports of individuals prosecuted for trafficking. The Government provides for no prevention or protection measures. A very small number of NGO's deal with trafficking; public awareness of the problem is low. While the regime of former President Slobodan Milosevic showed little interest in addressing the trafficking problem, the current Yugoslav and Serbian Republic authorities are cooperating to reform border policing in order to combat trafficking.
Montenegro is a transit point for trafficked women and children. Some reports also indicate that it is a destination point. Women are trafficked mainly from Moldova, Romania, Ukraine, Bosnia, and Russia, often through Belgrade and on to Western European countries and Kosovo. Some women also are trafficked through Montenegro to Albania and then on to Western European countries. There have been allegations, denied by the Montenegrin Government, that some Montenegrin authorities have colluded in trafficking. The Montenegrin Criminal Code does not specifically address trafficking in persons. The Montenegrin Government has appointed an official coordinator for trafficking issues, and has adopted an action plan, which includes the organization of special police teams trained in dealing with trafficking and victims of violence.
The U.N. Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), which administers Kosovo under U.N. Security Council Resolution 1244, is aware of the serious problems that exist in Kosovo concerning trafficking and is working to conduct anti-trafficking efforts.