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UNODC Executive Director meets with Guatemalan President during a two-day visit to the country   ...

On 21 November 2013, the UNODC Executive Director, Mr. Yury Fedotov, met with the President of Guatemala, His Excellency Otto Perez Molina. During the meeting, Mr. Fedotov welcomed the work being undertaken by the Guatemalan Government and stated that ""UNODC will continue to provide every possible technical support and assistance to the country".

The meeting with the president came during Mr. Fedotov's two-day mission to Guatemala to discuss a number of key issues with high-level members of the Guatemalan Government.

Accompanied by the UNODC Regional Representative for Central America and the Caribbean, Mr. Amado Philip de Andrés; the Executive Director also visited Guatemala's first Anti-Human Trafficking Unit within the National Police Force, acknowledging the unit as "a continuation of the good work already being undertaken in Guatemala by the authorities to counter human trafficking".

"Guatemala has successfully aligned its national laws to the human trafficking protocol of the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime. Now, with this unit fully operational, the authorities can continue to help the women, children and men subjected to this modern-day form of slavery." 

Prior to the event, Mr. Fedotov also met with the Vice-Minister of Security, His Excellency Edi Juárez, and the Vice-Presidency Secretary for Sexual Violence, Exploitation and Human Trafficking, Her Excellency Zulma Subillaga, to discuss the current challenges regarding the scourge of human trafficking that impacts millions of people, generating billions of dollars globally for the traffickers. 

Countries in Central America and the Caribbean have reported high proportions of victims trafficked for sexual exploitation; and, as is also the case in other regions, trafficking tends to follow a general pattern of victims being trafficked from the relatively poorer to comparatively richer neighbours. 

Meetings with the Minister of Agriculture, His Excellency Eller López Rodríguez, also took place, allowing for discussions on options to support current Government plans to prepare an alternative development programme in the northern regions of San Marcos and Huehuetenango. 

The UNODC delegation also met the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Attorney-General of Guatemala before returning to Panama to open the Fifth Session of the Conference of States Parties to the UN Convention against Corruption.