Action against Trafficking in Human Beings

GRETA publishes report on Malta

Strasbourg, 24.01.13 – The Council of Europe’s Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) has published today its first evaluation report on Malta.

In the report, GRETA notes the progress made by the Maltese authorities to develop the institutional and legal framework for combating trafficking in human beings, including the adoption of the first national action plan on combating trafficking in persons in October 2011 and the setting up of the Human Trafficking Monitoring Committee and a Stakeholder Task Force against human trafficking.

The report states that only 25 people in Malta were found to be victims of human trafficking between 2003 and 2011, all of whom were foreign nationals trafficked for sexual exploitation. However, GRETA considers that these figures may not reflect the true situation, given the lack of a formal procedure for identifying victims. The report welcomes the efforts made by the Maltese authorities to review identification and urges them to improve the procedure and to focus more on detecting trafficking for labour exploitation.

The report also notes that most of the criminal cases which have been launched since 2006 are still pending. GRETA urges the Maltese authorities to ensure that offences linked to human trafficking are investigated and prosecuted promptly and effectively.

Furthermore, GRETA calls on the Maltese authorities to adopt a clear framework for the repatriation and return of trafficking victims, and to ensure that all victims are able to access the support and compensation which they are entitled to.