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GRETAís first evaluation visit to Ukraine

30 October 2013 - A delegation of the Council of Europe's Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) carried out an evaluation visit to Ukraine from 21 to 25 October 2013. The visit was organised in the context of the first round of evaluation of the implementation of the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings.

During the visit, the GRETA delegation met with representatives of the Ministry of Social Policy, the Ministry of the Interior, the General Prosecutorís Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Education, the State Border Guards Service, the State Migration Service and the State Security Service. The GRETA delegation also held discussions with Members of Parliament, the Representative of the Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights dealing with childrenís rights, non-discrimination and gender equality, and a representative of the Office of the Ombudsman for Children under the President of Ukraine.

In Donetsk and Odessa, the GRETA delegation met members of the regional interdepartmental councils for family, gender equality, demographic growth, prevention of family violence and combating trafficking in human beings.

The GRETA delegation held separate meetings with representatives of non-governmental organisations active in combating trafficking in human beings and other representatives of civil society, including the Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine and the Ukrainian Bar Association. Consultations were also held with representatives of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Ukraine.

In the course of the visit, the GRETA delegation visited a medical rehabilitation centre for victims of human trafficking run by the IOM in co-operation with the Ukrainian authorities. Further, in Donetsk and Odessa, the delegation visited regional medical psychology centres and regional centres for social psychological assistance, which can assist and accommodate victims of trafficking as well as persons vulnerable to trafficking.

The visit was carried out by Ms Alina Braşoveanu, First Vice-President of GRETA, and Mr Helmut Sax, Second Vice-President of GRETA, who were accompanied by Mr David Dolidze and Ms Claudia Lam of the Anti-Trafficking Secretariat.

On the basis of the information gathered during the visit and the reply from the Ukrainian authorities to GRETAís questionnaire, GRETA will prepare a draft report containing an analysis of the implementation of the Convention by Ukraine and suggestions for further action. This draft report will be transmitted to the Ukrainian authorities for comments, which will be taken into account by GRETA when establishing its final report. GRETAís final report will be made public, together with eventual comments by the Ukrainian authorities.