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Liberia launches its situational analysis report on human trafficking

MONROVIA, LIBERIA, 1 March, 2010 – The Government of Liberia on Thursday launched the report entitled “Situational Analysis of Human Trafficking, Especially Women and Children in Liberia.” The event was held by Labour Minister Councillor Tiawan S. Gongloe, and was attended by senior government officials, national and international partners.

The report shows that human trafficking is prevalent in Liberia and provides valuable information on the scope and nature of the issue in Liberia. Although the focus was on the trafficking of children, the report suggests that both adults and children are trafficked in the country and beyond its borders. This is done for different purposes including labour exploitation, organ removal and the trafficking of drugs. The report notes that “officials do not have the skills to differentiate between trafficking, kidnappings and smuggling practices, especially in source or destination sites where an ‘intention to exploit’ is unknown.”

“Here in Liberia, when we speak of human rights, it is always about adults and not children,” says Minister Gongloe. “This report is indeed a useful tool for the government and people of Liberia. We would like to thank all of our partners especially UNICEF for its contribution in ensuring that this document is today finalized.”

The report is based on a review of existing literature, a rights-based policy-analysis, and qualitative field work with respondents from:  Montserrado, Grand Cape Mount, Lofa, Bong, Nimba, Grand Gedeh, Maryland, Grand Bassa and Margibi. Interviews and focus group discussions were also conducted with key informants from the government, UN, NGOs, civil society actors, caregivers, parents and children.

UNICEF calls on the Government to demonstrate its commitment to combat human trafficking through a rights-based approach by ratifying all relevant international and regional instruments and to fully enforce the implementation of all international instruments that it has signed and ratified. “I would like to call on the respective ministries and other institutions to facilitate the development of a comprehensive national anti-human trafficking strategy and plan of action based on the findings of this study,” said Ms. Isabel Crowley, UNICEF Liberia Resident Representative.

The report says that there have been some successes in the implementation of the National Plan on trafficking, largely due to collaboration with the United Nations, non-governmental organisations and community-based actors both internally and across borders. However, these efforts have been delayed due to logistical difficulties, the absence of skilled manpower, funding and material shortages, as well as ‘compromises’ at the level of the judiciary and in the community. These factors have hindered attempts to identify, intercept, arrest and prosecute perpetrators.

For additional information, please contact:
Adolphus Scott Communication Asst., UNICEF Liberia;
Tel + 231 6 282 074;
mailto:adscott@unicef.otg

G. Adolphus Satiah, National coordinator Anti Human Trafficking Secretariat, Ministry of Labour;
Tel + 231 6 513332;
gassatiah2002@yahoo.com


 

 

 

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