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GRETA publishes report on Albania
Strasbourg, 2 December 2011 - The Council of Europeís Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) has published today its first evaluation report on Albania.
In its report, GRETA notes the significant measures taken by the Albanian authorities to prevent and combat trafficking in human beings. These measures have included the setting up the Office of the National Co-ordinator for the fight against trafficking and the establishment of a national referral mechanism for the identification of and assistance to victims of trafficking.
However, GRETA considers that the Albanian authorities should pay increased attention to the problem of trafficking within Albania, which is reportedly on the increase. More research is needed to shed light on this issue and to inform future policy measures.
Whilst there have been numerous awareness raising campaigns, GRETA considers that more should be done to combat stereotypes and prejudices towards marginalised groups, which foster trafficking and prevent the reintegration of victims. GRETA also urges the Albanian authorities to step up action geared to fostering access to education and jobs for members of groups vulnerable to trafficking.
In the area of assistance to victims, GRETA urges the Albanian authorities to ensure that all assistance measures provided for by law are guaranteed in practice, by providing adequate financing to non-governmental organisations acting as service providers. Particular attention should also be paid to improving co-operation with destination countries regarding the repatriation of victims.
In addition, GRETA urges the Albanian authorities to reinforce measures for protecting victims of trafficking, with due regard to the special situation of child victims, regardless of whether they have agreed to participate in judicial proceedings. Further, GRETA considers that the authorities should take steps to ensure that the legislation related to the confiscation of proceeds from trafficking offences is enforced, and that victims of trafficking can effectively exercise their right to compensation.
Prior to drawing up its evaluation report, GRETA held consultations with the relevant authorities and non-governmental and international organisations active in the field of combating trafficking in human beings in Albania. A confidential first draft of the report was sent to the Albanian authorities and their comments were taken into account in the final evaluation report adopted by GRETA. This report is published together with the final comments of the Albanian authorities, as provided for by the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings.
On the basis of GRETAís report, the Committee of the Parties to the Convention will consider adopting recommendations addressed to the Government of Albania.