Egypt hosts the first Regional Forum for National Coordinating Bodies on Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling in Africa

Cairo, Egypt

In today's globalized world the power of cooperation and coordination networks for fighting human trafficking and migrant smuggling is not to be underestimated. As organized criminal networks span the globe, national, regional and international efforts to dismantle them must likewise adjust to the growing need of enhanced cooperation between Member States.

Egypt's National Coordinating Committee for Preventing and Combating Illegal Migration and Trafficking in Persons (NCCPIM-TIP) joined forces with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to host the first Regional Forum for African national coordinating bodies to combat human trafficking and migrant smuggling, with the generous support of the Government of the United Kingdom (UK).

The three-day Regional Forum offered an opportunity for knowledge exchange and advocated for enhanced cooperation to put in place institutional frameworks that holistically address human trafficking and migrant smuggling. Among other key issues, the discussions focused on prevention, protection, national coordination mechanisms and opportunities for enhanced regional and international cooperation. With representatives from 18 African countries, the diverse background and wide array of experiences captured the multi-faceted and complex nature of the issue. Representatives from relevant national institutions and line ministries including, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, National coordinating bodies on human trafficking and migrant smuggling as well as law enforcement entities.

The exchanges during the forum called for pragmatic and context specific responses to address human trafficking and migrant smuggling. Ms. Raoudha Labidi, the President of the National Authority Against Trafficking in Persons in Tunisia, called for the establishment of a specialized pool of experts to effectively address human trafficking.

The case from Nigeria presented by Dame Julie Okah-Donli, Director-General of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) offered  a proactive response through raising awareness on human trafficking in airports.

"The main thing about prevention is understanding the reasons, this means looking at social justice and addressing the root causes," the Eritrean representatives illustrated in the discussion on the possible root causes of both crimes.

Following the exchange of in depth experiences and disucssions, a set of recommendations was drafted by the participants. Some of the recommendations focused on:

- establishing of a regional network of anti-human trafficking and migrant smuggling coordination bodies,

- mapping and sharing information on existing bilateral and regional cooperation frameworks for combating both crimes,

- increasing the coordination with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), NGOs, Women Associations and Grass Root Organizations.

 

*Full list of countries: Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Libya, Mali, Morocco, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Tunisia.

To view the full list of recommendations and read the press release, please follow the links below:

Recommendations

Press Release