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The Council of Europe Convention on Action against Human Beings enters into force

Lisa Kerker

Today, February 1 2008, the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings enters into force for the 10 first ratifying states: Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Georgia, Moldova, Romania and Slovakia. The Convention contains a large set of provisions on prevention of trafficking, protection of the trafficked persons and their human rights, as well as prosecution of the traffickers.

The Convention pays special attention to gender equality through its articles 1 and 17. It addresses the demand; requests criminalisation of trafficking and recommends criminalisation of the use of services of a victim of trafficking; and provides for extensive protection measures for trafficked persons. The measures to protect and promote the rights of trafficked persons regard identification of the victims; protection of private life; assistance; recovery and reflection period; residence permit; compensation and legal redress; and repatriation and return of victims of trafficking.

We hope that the Convention will be of great use in the fight against trafficking in human beings, and that it will be efficiently used for combating trafficking in women and girls for sexual exploitation as well as for protecting the rights of women victims of trafficking.

14 states have now ratified the Convention which will enter into force for Bosnia-Herzegovina, France, Malta and Norway on May 1. For more information about the Convention and its status please click here.