A growing number of people are exploited and compelled by need or by force to provide organs for transplantation to people within their own countries or abroad, the UN Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, Joy Ngozi Ezeilo, warned on Friday.
"The root cause of trafficking in persons for the removal of organs is an acute shortage of organs for transplantation worldwide, and a mismatch between the growing demand for organ transplants and the strict limits set on available supplies", the expert said in her annual report to the UN General Assembly.
The Special Rapporteur also stressed that available information on trafficking in persons for the removal of organs is incomplete and often unverified. "This lack of information mainly results from the clandestine nature of the trafficking and from the fact that victims have little opportunities and incentives to denounce such violations she said. […]
Three key international anti-trafficking expert mechanisms today called for a concerted global response to fight the transnational scourge of trafficking in persons.
"Partnership is the backbone for effective coordinated efforts to implement a human-rights based approach while addressing this multi-faceted phenomenon", they said on the occasion of the European Anti-Trafficking Day.
"Cooperation between origin, transit and destination countries, but also with regional and international mechanisms, as well as private stakeholders such as multi-national corporations and civil society organizations, is essential for comprehensive responses to trafficking in persons" stressed the human rights experts from the United Nations, the Council of Europe and the Organization for Co-operation and Security in Europe (OSCE).
The UN Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, Joy Ezeilo, reasserted that "trafficking in itself is a grave violation of human rights which leads to further violations of fundamental rights". […]
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, François Crépeau, today reiterated his call on all European Union member states to urgently adopt a new approach to migration that places the rights of migrants at the forefront.
"Last week’s tragic events off the coast of Italy, which has already claimed the lives of over 100 migrants, highlights the human tragedy that migration can entail", Mr. Crépeau said after a crucial discussion on international migration and development, convened by the UN General Assembly in New York.
Only 150 of the 500 migrants aboard the overcrowded ship are reported to have survived the perilous trip across the Mediterranean when the vessel sank after a fire broke out. The victims, which include a number of women and children, are believed to be mostly Eritreans and Somalis.
"Unfortunately, this tragedy is just one in a long line of migration-related deaths at borders, be it in deserts, in mountainous regions, as well as at sea, not only in the Mediterranean but around the world", the expert noted. […]
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, Joy Ngozi Ezeilo, today called on the Government of Italy to further boost and coordinate its national anti-trafficking response.
"Italy needs to rekindle its fight to end human trafficking, especially the unabated exploitation of the prostitution of foreign women and girls", Ms. Ezeilo said at the end of her official visit to Italy, from 12 to 20 September 2013, during which she examined the situation of trafficked individuals and assessed the impact of anti-trafficking measures in the country.
"The phenomenon of trafficking in persons in Italy is unfortunately growing in scale and traffickers are getting more daring in exploitation and abuse of their victims", the human rights expert said, while acknowledging the authorities resolve to combat all forms of trafficking.
Sexual exploitation, especially involving women from Nigeria and Eastern Europe, is the most prevalent and documented form of trafficking in Italy. The Arab uprisings affecting Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and Syria, has further exacerbated the problem of migrant inflow, smuggling and trafficking in persons for labour and sexual exploitation. Trafficked persons in Italy are international in character with a growing number from Latin America and Asia. […]
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, Joy Ngozi Ezeilo, will visit Italy from 12 to 20 September 2013 to examine the situation of trafficked individuals and assess the impact of anti-trafficking measures in the country.
"During my mission, I wish to reach out to a wide range of stakeholders and trafficked persons themselves, so that their voices are heard and can be considered in the Government’s responses to combatting human trafficking", said the independent expert designated by the UN Human Rights Council to promote the prevention of trafficking in persons in all its forms and to encourage measures to uphold and protect the human rights of victims.
"I hope to identify good practices as well as remaining obstacles in fighting and preventing human trafficking in Italy", Ms. Ezeilo said. "Particular attention will be given to measures taken to protect victims of trafficking and provide them with access to effective remedies". […]