With the support of USAID/Bangladesh, Winrock International organised a National Conference in Dhaka with the presence of US Ambassador and honorable government officials. The conference was organised to accelerate the fight against human trafficking in Bangladesh and to commit to specific actions to improve the implementation of Bangladesh's anti-trafficking legal framework. The achievements of the Government of Bangladesh in combating human trafficking were highlighted by many.
Dr. Kamal Uddin Ahmed, Additional Secretary, National Point of Contact for Anti Human Trafficking, Ministry of Home Affairs, said most of the victims of human trafficking are aged between 18 and 24 years. Ms. Sadia Muna Tasneem, Director General, United Nations and Human Rights, Ministry of foreign Affairs, said human trafficking is the fastest-growing illegal business in the world. It is a
trans-national organised crime and one of the causes of the increasing number of trafficking of persons is global mobility of population.
US Ambassador Dan W. Mozena recognised the adoption of the Human Trafficking Deterrence and Suppression Act of 2012 and the 2012-14 National Plan of Action to Combat Human Trafficking as major achievements of the Government of Bangladesh. He emphasised the importance of turning present framework into operational reality and encouraged all conference participants to contribute to that goal. He reiterated the U.S. Government's commitment to help
Bangladeshi institutions to fully implement the 2012 anti-trafficking law. Ambassador Mozena recommended that Bangladesh should finalize, adopt, and disseminate the implementing rules for the 2012 Human Trafficking Deterrence and Suppression Act (HTDSA) and train government officials on its implementation. He also encouraged the government to increase efforts to prosecute trafficking cases and convict trafficking offenders.
He said, “The shackles of modern slavery are lies, false offers of jobs, education and bright futures, drugs, fear, torture, sexual abuse.”
Bangladesh has made important progress in the battle against trafficking, and this progress was recognised in the 2013 Trafficking in Persons Report, which was just released by the State Department. Ambassador Mozena stated that “I think the greatest need now is for the government to finalise the implementing rules to facilitate full implementation of the 2012 anti-trafficking law. These rules are the critical next steps in winning the war against trafficking as they will close loopholes, clarify vague sections of the law, and thus facilitate prosecutions.”
From Law desk.