Prevent, Detect, Investigate - UNODC Takes Training and Awareness Raising on Trafficking in Persons to the Regions in Turkmenistan, Launches Training Film in Turkmen Language

This year's World Day against Trafficking in Persons highlighted the importance of Government action in the interest of victims of trafficking. During the week from 22 to 30 July, Turkmenistan joined the rest of the world in celebrating the World Day to encourage everyone to take action to prevent this heinous crime.

UNODC facilitated the campaign which included capacity building and awareness raising activities for 76 criminal justice practitioners and youth and public at large.

UNODC worked in partnership with the Ministry of Interior, Supreme Court, General Prosecutor's Office, State Migration Service, Youth and Women's Unions, the Ministry of Sport and Youth policy, local authorities of Ashgabat, Dashoguz and Turkmenabad, as well as civil society and international organizations.

"Through our campaign and training work, law enforcement and other stakeholders gained the essential knowledge and skills necessary to take action in the fight against human trafficking," said Mr. Koen Marquering, UNODC International Manager. "Targeting preventive and investigative work to the regions, where vulnerability to exploitation is higher, is extremely important", Mr. Marquering noted.

UNODC expert Mr. David Newton facilitated two four-day training-courses in Dashoguz and Lebap regions based on a training manual specifically developed for such training in Turkmenistan.

The training courses enhanced the knowledge of criminal justice practitioners to prevent, identify, investigate and prosecute human trafficking and smuggling of migrants, whilst ensuring a victim-centered approach and due assistance and support to trafficking in persons victims.

Participants were familiarized with the international framework based on the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, national legislation of Turkmenistan on combating human trafficking and respective amendments to the Criminal Code of Turkmenistan. They were engaged in various capacity building exercises to illustrate the complexity of the investigation and prosecution process of trafficking in persons cases and worked on several case studies.

A UNODC training film entitled "Victims not Villains" on the prosecution of cases of human trafficking in accordance with international standards were dubbed into Turkmen language and demonstrated to the training participants. Mr. David Newton highlighted the importance of inter-agency cooperation among law enforcement bodies in preventing, investigating and prosecuting human trafficking with due regard for the need to protect and assist victims of trafficking.

These activities were conducted as part of Sub-program 2 "Criminal Justice, crime prevention and integrity" of the UNODC Program for Central Asia with generous financial support from the US State Department's Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL).

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Vasilina Brazhko (Ms.),

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cell. +996 775 98 78 17, e-mail: vasilina.brazhko[at]