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Bangkok Statement on Migration and Development calls for reducing impunity of migrant smugglers and human traffickers

Bangkok (Thailand), 4 October 2010
- From 22 to 24 September 2010, representatives of 31 Governments in Asia and the Pacific met in Bangkok for the Asia-Pacific Regional Preparatory Meeting for the Global Forum on Migration and Development 2010. On the last day of the meeting, the participants adopted the Bangkok Statement on Migration and Development.

On human trafficking and migrant smuggling, the Bangkok Statement emphasizes that human traffickers and migrant smugglers take advantage of people's vulnerability, particularly the vulnerabilities of those who may be desperate to migrate in an attempt to establish a better life or to flee persecution. At destination, smuggled migrants' status as irregular immigrants makes them vulnerable to abuse, exploitation and human trafficking, while trafficked victims will suffer exploitation at the hands of their traffickers.

Moreover, the Statement includes the recommendation that "while addressing migrant smuggling and trafficking in persons in a comprehensive way, impunity needs to be reduced by enacting national legislation and strengthening law enforcement efforts, including with particular focus on the dismantling of criminal networks."

The Bangkok Statement is to be submitted to the Global Forum on Migration and Development, to be held from 8 to 11 November 2010, in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

The 31 Governments from Asia and the Pacific represented at the Bangkok meeting were Afghanistan, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Lao People's Democratic Republic, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, the Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation, Samoa, the Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu and Viet Nam.