Blog post written by Dr Jean-Pierre Gauci and Francesca Romana Partipilo (British Institute of International and Comparative Law) and forms part of a series of blog posts examining the implementation of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.
Objective 10 of the Global Compact for Migration (GCM) aims at preventing, combating and eradicating trafficking in persons in the context of international migration. Trafficking in persons is defined as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons by means of a threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. The definition requires three elements: the act, the means and the purpose. In the case of child trafficking, the use of the above-mentioned means is not required in order for the crime to be punishable. In all cases, any form of consent given by the victim is deemed ‘irrelevant’.
The prohibition of human trafficking is now established in a range of human rights treaties, whether directly or indirectly. Direct provisions about trafficking can be found in Article 5(3) of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and Article 10 of the Arab Charter of Human Rights, and in the Inter-American Convention on Human Rights specifically prohibiting Trafficking in Women (Art. 6(1)). Other human rights instruments prohibit slavery, servitude and forced labour. Relevant provisions in this regard include: Article 4 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 8 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Article 4 of the European Convention on Human Rights, Article 5 of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, the ILO Convention on the Worst Forms of Child Labour (Convention n.182). The direct line between human trafficking as defined in the Protocol and the prohibition of slavery, servitude and forced labour was drawn, amongst others, by the European Court of Human Rights in Rantsev v Cyprus and Russia. The Court in this and other judgments also identifies a number of both negative and positive obligations for States.
In line with the scope of the GCM, Article 10 is limited to international trafficking – or rather trafficking impacting migrants. It is worth noting however that there is now growing consensus that the international legal framework on trafficking equally covers forms of trafficking of nationals within their own countries. Moreover, the focus on people on the move (migrants) in the Compact reflects the fact that the vulnerability of migrants and displaced populations to trafficking is axiomatic even if literature in the area remains relatively limited.
Of particular interest and in line with the prohibition of trafficking under human rights instruments, is the reference to the ‘eradication’ of trafficking. The commitment in the Compact is not simply to ‘prevent and combat’ trafficking but a more ambitious one – that of eradicating trafficking.
The key international instrument on human trafficking is the ‘Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons Especially Women and Children supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime’(Trafficking Protocol) and it is therefore no surprise that the first action promoted under the Protocol relates to the promotion, ratification, accession and implementation of that same Protocol. The Protocol has been described as ‘the single, most important legal instrument on trafficking’ despite its various flaws and weaknesses. This commitment entails a definitional and a substantive dimension. The definitional dimension entails adopting the definition of trafficking as envisaged under the Protocol. Indeed, reaching an agreement on the definition of trafficking as set out in Article 3 of the Protocol (and quoted above) is one of the greatest achievements of the Vienna process that led to the adoption of the Protocol. The substantive dimension requires States to prevent and criminalize trafficking and to offer protection to trafficked persons.
Based on this provision, Objective 10 of the Global Compact for Migration aims at preventing, combating and eradicating trafficking in persons in the context of international migration. In order to achieve this objective, the Global Compact envisages a list of strategies and recommendations for States Parties. These strategies find their equivalent in several human rights instruments at the international and regional level, analysed in more detail in the following sections of this post.
Promote the implementation of the Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons and take into consideration relevant recommendations of the UNODC Toolkit to Combat Trafficking in Persons and other relevant UNODC documents when developing and implementing national and regional policies and measures relating to trafficking in persons
Whilst this commitment is rather self-explanatory, it is worth noting that an array of resources have been developed by UNODC and a range of other actors to support States in developing and implementing the necessary national law and policy. The need to develop and implement national and regional policies is also encapsulated in other instruments. The OHCHR Recommended Principles and Guidelines on Human Rights and Human Traffickingfor instance, recommend that “States shall adopt appropriate legislative and other measures necessary to establish, as criminal offences, trafficking, its component acts and related conduct”.
This beyond more specific obligations such as: the obligation to criminalize trafficking under Article 5 of the Trafficking Protocol and Article 18 of the Council of Europe Trafficking Conventionand the requirement under Article 7 of theInter-American Convention on International Traffic in Minors to:adopt effective measures, to prevent and severely punish the international traffic in minors.
The inclusion of this commitment allows for the range of requirements and recommendations included in these soft law instruments and tools to be brought to bear on efforts under the strength of the compact. The Global Action Plan to Prevent and Address Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants is a joint initiative by the European Union and UNODC. The project is implemented in partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). The objective of the project is to prevent and address trafficking in persons in 13 target countries. In addition, the project is expected to enhance the implementation of the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially women and children.
The UNODC Toolkit to Combat Trafficking in Persons was drafted in order to develop guidelines and collect and disseminate successful practices with respect to victim identification, investigation of offences, victim assistance and repatriation, training and capacity-building and awareness-raising strategies and campaigns. The toolkit identifies the lack of specific or adequate legislation on trafficking at the national level as one of the major obstacles in the fight against trafficking. Therefore, the toolkit recommends the development of an appropriate legal framework that is consistent with relevant international instruments and standards. This is further supported through the development of ‘Model laws’ and Policy Guides including those developed as part of the Bali Process.
Monitor irregular migration routes which may be exploited by human trafficking networks to recruit and victimize smuggled or irregular migrants, in order to strengthen cooperation at bilateral, regional and cross-regional levels on prevention, investigation, and prosecution of perpetrators, as well as on identification of, and protection and assistance to victims of trafficking in persons
The second commitment can broadly be divided into 2 parts. The first is a focus on monitoring migration routes and the second focuses on cooperation including cross border cooperation.
In this respect, the Transnational Organized Crime Convention, in its Article 1, states that its purpose is to promote cooperation to prevent and to combat transnational organized crime more effectively. Similarly, Article 2 (c) of the Trafficking Protocol states that the purpose of the Protocol is the promotion of cooperation among States Parties in order to meet the objectives of preventing trafficking and protecting and assisting victims of trafficking. In this respect, Article 9 of the Trafficking Protocol devotes its attention to the prevention of trafficking and requires States parties to take or strengthen measures, including through bilateral or multilateral cooperation, to alleviate the factors that make persons, especially women and children, vulnerable to trafficking. This clearly includes (albeit is not limited to) migration routes. Finally, the article requires that States Parties adopt legislative or other measures, such as educational, social or cultural measures, including through bilateral and multilateral cooperation, to discourage the demand that fosters all forms of exploitation of persons, especially women and children.
Further, Article 1 of the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking states that the purpose of the convention is to “promote international cooperation on action against trafficking in human beings”. Article 1 of the Inter-American Convention on International Traffic in Minors states that the purpose of the convention is to “institute a system of mutual legal assistance among the States Parties, dedicated to the prevention and punishment of the international traffic in minors”. Further, the convention envisages, in Article 4, that “States Parties shall cooperate with States that are not Parties in preventing and punishing international traffic in minors”.
The Toolkit to Combat Trafficking in Persons underlines that in a large number of cases of trafficking in persons, national authorities need the assistance of other States for the successful investigation, prosecution and punishment of offenders. In this respect, Article 18 of the Organized Crime Convention addresses the issue of mutual legal assistance. The provision establishes that “States Parties shall afford one another the widest measure of mutual legal assistance in investigations, prosecutions and judicial proceedings in relation to the offences covered by the Convention”.
As for the modalities of such assistance, the article explains that “Mutual legal assistance shall be afforded to the fullest extent possible under relevant laws, treaties, agreements and arrangements with respect to investigations, prosecutions and judicial proceedings”. Article 10 of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, states that:
States Parties shall take all necessary steps to strengthen international cooperation by multilateral, regional and bilateral arrangements for the prevention, detection, investigation, prosecution and punishment of those responsible for acts involving the sale of children, child prostitution, child pornography and child sex tourism. States Parties shall also promote international cooperation and coordination between their authorities, national and international non-governmental organizations and international organizations.
In Europe, the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings provides, in its Article 5, that “Each Party shall take measures to establish or strengthen national co-ordination between the various bodies responsible for preventing and combating trafficking in human beings”.
In addition, the Inter-American Convention against Trafficking in Minors envisages, in Article 1, the creation of a system of mutual legal assistance among the States Parties, dedicated to the prevention and punishment of the international traffic in minors.
Finally, Article 8 of the ILO Convention on the Worst Forms of Child Labour (Convention n.182)establishes that “Members shall take appropriate steps to assist one another in giving effect to the provisions of this Convention through enhanced international cooperation and/or assistance”.
As for the topic of international cooperation in the field of the fight against trafficking in persons, the Toolkit to Combat Trafficking in Personsexplicitly acknowledges that international cooperation is a basic precondition for the success of any response to trafficking in persons. Indeed, trafficking can take place across borders and, in such a case, it cannot be tackled without joint international efforts and international cooperation. In addition, the OHCHR Guidelines on Trafficking, in Guideline 11, on cooperation and coordination between States and regions, recommend that States should consider “adopting bilateral agreements aimed at preventing trafficking, protecting the rights and dignity of trafficked persons and promoting their welfare”. In addition, the guideline proposes that States elaborate regional and sub-regional treaties on trafficking, using the Palermo Trafficking Protocol and relevant international human rights standards as a baseline and framework.
Share relevant information and intelligence through transnational and regional mechanisms, including on the modus operandi, economic models and conditions driving trafficking networks
The need to share information and intelligence is at the forefront of all requirements of cooperation between States in combatting human trafficking.
Article 10 of the Trafficking Protocol provides that law enforcement, immigration or other relevant authorities of States Parties shall, as appropriate, cooperate with one another by exchanging information to enable them to determine whether individuals crossing international borders are perpetrators or victims of trafficking, the types of travel documents used for the purpose of trafficking in persons and the means and methods used by organized criminal groups for the purpose of trafficking in persons.
Similarly, Article 6 of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornographyrequires States Parties to:
afford one another the greatest measure of assistance in connection with investigations or criminal or extradition proceedings brought in respect of the offences set forth in the Protocol, including assistance in obtaining evidence at their disposal necessary for the proceedings.
In addition, the provision envisages that:
States Parties shall carry out their obligations under paragraph 1 in conformity with any treaties or other arrangements on mutual legal assistance that may exist between them. In the absence of such treaties or arrangements, States Parties shall afford one another assistance in accordance with their domestic law.
At the regional level, Article 32 of the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking states that:
the Parties shall cooperate with each other, through application of relevant applicable international and regional instruments, for the purpose of: preventing and combating trafficking in human beings; protecting and providing assistance to victims; investigations or proceedings concerning criminal offences established in accordance with this convention.
Finally, the Inter-American Convention on International Traffic in Minors demands, in its Article 8, that:
States Parties to the Convention undertake to: assist each other promptly and expeditiously through their Central Authorities, to conduct judicial and administrative proceedings; and to establish through their Central Authorities mechanisms for the exchange of information about any domestic statute, case law, administrative practices, statistics and modalities regarding international traffic in minors in their States.
Strengthen cooperation between all relevant actors, including financial intelligence units, regulators and financial institutions, to identify and disrupt financial flows associated with trafficking in persons, and enhance judicial cooperation and enforcement with the aim to ensure accountability and end impunity
In this respect, Article 12 of the Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, on confiscation, establishes that States Parties shall adopt measures to enable confiscation of the proceeds of crime derived from offences covered by the convention and property, equipment or other instrumentalities used in or destined for use in offences covered by the convention. In addition, Article 12 (2) provides that “States Parties shall adopt such measures as may be necessary to enable the identification, tracing, freezing or seizure of any item referred to in paragraph 1”. Further, Article 13 of the Convention regulates the international cooperation for the purposes of confiscation, establishing that States Parties should take measures to cooperate among themselves for the purposes of confiscation of proceeds of crime, property, equipment or other instrumentalities linked to the offences covered by the convention. Finally, Article 14 regulates the disposal of confiscated proceeds of crime or property, and the cooperation among states for this purpose.
Apply measures that address the particular vulnerabilities of women, men, girls and boys, regardless of their migration status, that have become or are at risk of becoming victims of trafficking in persons and other forms of exploitation
At the outset, it is worth noting that threats related to immigration status are often used by traffickers as a means of keeping their victims under their control. Migrants’ vulnerabilities are further increased due to: sometimes problematic status whilst a lack of knowledge of rights often make it more difficult for victims to report the crime and seek assistance.
The first human rights instrument in which trafficking in persons was addressed is the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. Article 6 of the Convention provides that “States Parties shall take all appropriate measures, including legislation, to suppress all forms of traffic in women and exploitation of prostitution of women”. In Africa, trafficking is incorporated by the African Union as a violation of women’s rights under Article 4 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Right of Women in Africa.
As for minors, Article 35 of the Convention on the Rights of the Childstates that “States Parties shall take all appropriate national, bilateral and multilateral measures to prevent the abduction of, the sale of or traffic in children for any purpose or in any form”. In addition, the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography provides, in its Article 1, that “States Parties shall prohibit the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography”. In the Americas, the Inter-American Convention on International Traffic in Minors aims at protecting the fundamental rights of minors and at preventing and punishing the international traffic of minors (Art.1 of the convention). The convention requires states parties to cooperate with states that are not parties in preventing and punishing the international traffic in minors, and in protecting and caring for minors who are victims of that wrongful act (Art.4 of the convention). The Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings provides, in its Article 5, that “Each Party shall take specific measures to reduce children’s vulnerability to trafficking, notably by creating a protective environment for them”. In addition, the provision specifies that “Each Party shall promote a Human Rights-based approach and shall use gender mainstreaming and a child-sensitive approach in the development, implementation and assessment of all the policies” related to trafficking.
At the European level, it is worth noting the ECrHR judgment in Chowdury and Others v. Greece, where the Strasbourg Court found that the applicants were victims of human trafficking and forced labour. The applicants in the case at hand were Bangladeshi migrants living in Greece without a work permit, who were nonetheless recruited to work in a strawberry farm. Accordingly, the Court found that:
the applicants were aware that their irregular situation put them at risk of being arrested and detained with a view to their removal from Greece. An attempt to leave their work would no doubt have made this more likely and would have meant the loss of any hope of receiving the wages due to them. Furthermore, the applicants, who had not received any salary, could neither live elsewhere in Greece nor leave the country.
In addition, the Court considered that:
where an employer abuses his power or takes advantage of the vulnerability of his workers in order to exploit them, they do not offer themselves for work voluntarily. The prior consent of the victim is not sufficient to exclude the characterization of work as forced labour.
Accordingly, the Court underlined that the “applicants began working at a time when they were in a situation of vulnerability as irregular migrants without resources and at risk of being arrested, detained and deported”. In conclusion, the Court characterized the circumstances of the case as forced labour, one of the components of human trafficking, and held for the first time that exploitation of irregular migrant labour amounts to forced labour, demonstrating how the irregular migration status of a person can be used in order to keep control of the individual in question and exploit them.
Finally, in this regard, the ILO Convention on the Worst Forms of Child Labour (Convention n.182), in its Article 6, requires Each Member State to “design and implement programmes of action to eliminate as a priority the worst forms of child labour”.
Further, it is worth noting that in her 2018 report on “Trafficking in persons, especially women and children”, the UN Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons highlighted that “trafficking in persons often stems from existing vulnerabilities, such as gender-based discrimination and stereotypes”. In addition, according to the latest UNODC Global Report on Trafficking in Persons, women and girls still make up a large share of the total number of trafficked persons, amounting to 51% and 20% respectively.
Strengthen legislation and relevant procedures to enhance prosecution of traffickers, avoid criminalization of migrants who are victims of trafficking in persons for trafficking-related offences, and ensure that the victim receives appropriate protection and assistance
As for this point, the Trafficking Protocol, in Article 5, establishes that “Each State Party shall adopt such legislative and other measures as may be necessary to establish as criminal offences the conduct set forth in Article 3 of the Protocol”, with Article 3 establishing that:
Trafficking in persons shall mean the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation.
In addition, the Inter-American Convention on Trafficking in Minors envisages, in Article 7, that “States Parties undertake to adopt effective measures, under their domestic law, to prevent and severely punish the international traffic in minors”. Finally, Article 18 of the Council of Europe Convention on Trafficking establishes that “Each Party shall adopt such legislative and other measures as may be necessary to establish as criminal offences the conduct contained in article 4 of the Convention”.
As for the necessity to avoid the criminalization of victims of trafficking in persons for trafficking-related offences, the OHCHR Principles and Guidelines on Human Rights and Human Trafficking (E/2002/68/Add.1) specify, in guideline 2, that States should:
ensure that trafficked persons are not prosecuted for violations of immigration laws or for the activities they are involved in as a direct consequence of their situation as trafficked persons.
Furthermore, the guideline establishes that trafficked persons should not, in any circumstance, be held in immigration detention or in other forms of custody. Furthermore, guideline 5 provides that states should guarantee that traffickes are and will remain the focus of anti-trafficking strategies and that law enforcement efforts do not place trafficked persons at risk of being punished for offences committed as a consequence of their situation. In this regard, the Council of Europe Convention on Trafficking contains a non-punishment provision in its article 26, establishing that:
Each Party shall, in accordance with the basic principles of its legal system, provide for the possibility of not imposing penalties on victims for their involvement in unlawful activities, to the extent that they have been compelled to do so.
Regarding the issue of the protection of victims of trafficking, Article 6 of the Trafficking Protocol contains a list of provisions devoted to the assistance and protection to victims of trafficking, including during legal proceedings related to the crime at hand. Similarly, Articles 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15 of the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking contain some provisions related to the protection and assistance of victims of trafficking. Article 10 of the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking contains measures to protect and promote the rights of victims, providing that “Each Party shall provide its competent authorities with persons who are trained and qualified in preventing and combating trafficking in human beings, in identifying and helping victims, including children”. Further, the provision requires states to “adopt such legislative or other measures as may be necessary to identify victims as appropriate in collaboration with other parties and relevant support organisations”. Other provisions on the protection and assistance to victims of trafficking concern the identification of the victims, the protection of their private life, personal data and identity, the assistance to the victims in their physical, psychological and social recovery, the access of victims to the labour market, the provision for a recovery and reflection period in order for the victim to “recover and escape the influence of traffickers and/or to take an informed decision on cooperating with the competent authorities”, the provision of a renewable residence permit to victims of trafficking, and finally the access to compensation and legal redress for victims. Some other measures regarding the protection of victims of trafficking will be analysed in the following section.
Article 8 of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography provides that:
States Parties shall adopt appropriate measures to protect the rights and interests of child victims at all stages of the criminal justice process, by recognizing the vulnerability of child victims and adapting procedures to recognize their special needs; informing child victims of their rights; allowing their views, needs and concerns to be presented and considered in proceedings where their personal interests are affected; providing appropriate support services to child victims throughout the legal process; protecting the privacy and identity of child victims.
Provide migrants that have become victims of trafficking in persons with protection and assistance, such as measures for physical, psychological and social recovery, as well as measures that permit them to remain in the country of destination, temporarily or permanently, facilitating victims’ access to justice, including redress and compensation
The Recommended Principles and Guidelines on Human Rights and Human Trafficking provide that “States shall ensure that trafficked persons are protected from further exploitation and harm and have access to adequate physical and psychological care”.
Article 6 of the Trafficking Protocol, on the assistance to and protection of victims of trafficking in persons, provides that “each State Party shall protect the privacy and identity of victims of trafficking in persons, including, inter alia, by making legal proceedings relating to such trafficking confidential”. In addition, the provision requires States to ensure that their domestic legal or administrative systems contain measures that provide to victims of trafficking in persons: information on relevant court and administrative proceedings, and assistance to enable their views and concerns to be presented and considered at appropriate stages of criminal proceedings against offenders. The provision also envisages measures to:
provide for the physical, psychological and social recovery of victims of trafficking in persons, and in particular the provision of: appropriate housing, counselling and information, in particular as regards their legal rights; medical, psychological and material assistance; and employment, educational and training opportunities.
Finally, the article at hand specifies that “Each State Party shall endeavor to provide for the physical safety of victims of trafficking in persons while they are within its territory”. Article 39 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child requires States to “take all appropriate measures to promote physical and psychological recovery and social reintegration of a child victim of any form of abuse”.
In addition, Article 8 of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography establishes that:
States Parties shall adopt appropriate measures to protect the rights and interests of child victims of the practices prohibited under the protocol at all stages of the criminal justice process, in particular by: recognizing the vulnerability of child victims; informing child victims of their rights; allowing the views, needs and concerns of child victims to the presented and considered in legal proceedings; protecting the privacy and identity of child victims and avoiding unnecessary delays in the disposition of cases and the execution of orders or decrees granting compensation to child victims.
Further, Article 7 (2) (b) and (c) of the ILO’s Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention requires States to take effective and timely measures to provide for the rehabilitation and social integration of the worst forms of child labour, including trafficking.
In Europe, the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking provides for the identification of victims of trafficking as an instrument to provide protection to them, in Article 10. In addition, Article 11 of the Convention makes provision for the protection of private life of the victims, stating that “Each Party shall protect the private life and identity of victims”. Article 12 provides that:
Each Party shall adopt such legislative or other measures as may be necessary to assist the victims in their physical, psychological and social recovery. Such assistance shall include at least: standards of living capable of ensuring their subsistence, such as appropriate and secure accommodation, psychological and material assistance; access to emergency medical treatment, translation and interpretation services, counselling and information, assistance to enable their rights and interests to be presented and considered at appropriate stages of criminal proceedings against offenders, and access to education for children.
In its jurisprudence, the European Court of Human Rights further expanded on State obligations to protect victims of trafficking.
As for the measures necessary to permit victims of trafficking to remain in the country of destination, it is worth noting that Article 14 of the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking envisages that:
Each Party shall issue a renewable residence permit to victims, in one or other of the two following situations: when the competent authority considers that their stay is necessary owing to their personal situation; when the competent authority considers that their stay is necessary for the purpose of their cooperation with the competent authorities in investigation or criminal proceedings.
Paragraph 2 of the provision establishes that “The residence permit for child victims shall be issue in accordance with the best interest of the child”. A similar residence permit (and reflection period) is catered for in EU Law although it ought to be noted that under both, the issuance of a permit can be made conditional on the victim’s ability and willingness to cooperate with the authorities.
Invest in awareness-raising campaigns, in partnership with relevant stakeholders, for migrants and prospective migrants on the risks and dangers of trafficking in persons
In this respect, Article 9 (2) of the Trafficking Protocol, devoted to the issue of prevention of trafficking, specifies that “States Parties shall endeavor to undertake measures such as research, information and mass media campaigns and social and economic initiatives to prevent and combat trafficking in persons”.
Article 5 (2) of the Council of Europe Convention provides that:
Each Party shall establish and/or strengthen effective policies and programmes to prevent trafficking in human beings, by such means as: research, information, awareness raising and education campaigns, social and economic initiatives and training programmes, in particular for persons vulnerable to trafficking and for professional concerned with trafficking in human beings.
Similarly, Article 9 (2) of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, provides that:
States Parties shall promote awareness in the public at large, including children, through information by all appropriate means, education and training, about the preventive measures and harmful effects of the offences referred to in the Protocol. In fulfilling their obligations under this article, States Parties shall encourage the participation of the community and, in particular, children and child victims, in such information and education and training programmes.
In addition, the OSCE Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human Beings includes the following measures to be taken at the national level: undertaking, in cooperation with civil society and non-governmental organizations, information campaigns to generate public awareness about trafficking in its various forms; increasing awareness about trafficking among immigration authorities and consular and diplomatic personnel; increasing the awareness of other relevant target groups, including policymakers, law enforcement officers and other relevant professionals; finally reasing the awareness of the media since the perception of the problem of trafficking in human beings as displayed by the media should include a clear explanation of the phenomenon and a realistic portrayal of the victims.
As demonstrated above, despite the non-legally binding nature of the Global Compact for Migration, which limits itself to a role of guidance for States Parties, its objectives find an equivalent in several international instruments which are legally binding and therefore represent the standard with which States Parties to the respective instruments must comply. In this respect, it was demonstrated how the GCM summarizes and integrates all the obligations already binding States on the basis of the international human rights instruments analysed above.
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Global Report on Trafficking in Persons (United Nations publication, Sales No. E. 16.IV.6)
Rantsev v. Cyprus and Russia (application No. 25965/04), judgment of 7 January 2010; M. and other v. Italy and Bulgaria (application No. 40020/03), judgment of 31 July 2012; J. and others v. Austria (application No. 58216/12), judgment of 17 January 2017.
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