ASHGABAT, 18 October 2013 – The OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Leonid Kozhara marked European Anti-Trafficking Day today by calling for efficient implementation by all participating States of their commitments to eradicate trafficking in human beings.
Promoting the fight against trafficking in human beings was reaffirmed by the Ukrainian OSCE Chairmanship in 2013 as one of its priorities, with the aim of addressing all forms of this heinous crime that violates human dignity and undermines human rights and fundamental freedoms in the OSCE area.
The OSCE Chairperson underlined the urgency of strengthening co-operation within the OSCE, stepping up international efforts to prevent human trafficking, adequately protect trafficked persons and prosecute traffickers. “New specific features and forms of trafficking in human beings have to be recognized and properly addressed. Our tools to oppose modern-day slavery need to be updated to meet its current challenges,” Kozhara said.
“We need to develop partnerships at the national and international level with civil society, the private sector, international organizations, trade unions and all other stakeholders,” he said stressing the important contribution of the High-Level Conference “Strengthening the OSCE Response to Trafficking in Human Beings” convened by the Ukrainian OSCE Chairmanship in Kyiv on 10-11 June 2013 to this cause.
“We should take advantage of innovative approaches advocated for by the OSCE and other major international organizations, as well as of best practices that proved to be efficient in a number of participating States.” the OSCE Chair said. He also expressed confidence that the adoption of the Addendum to the 2003 OSCE Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human Beings, proposed by the Ukrainian Chairmanship, would set the ground for enhancing partnerships to fight this modern slavery.
OSCE Chairperson-in-Office is currently in Ashgabat for the high-level conference on energy security and sustainability.