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Cyprus to host CoE seminar on combating human trafficking
2007-02-08 10:52:07

Nicosia, Feb 8 - Cyprus will be hosting the sixth regional seminar on efforts to combat human trafficking and promoting the signature and ratification of its Convention on Action against Trafficking of Human Beings.

The seminar, in Nicosia on February 15 and 16, is organized by the Equality Division Directorate General of Human Rights of the 46-member Council of Europe in cooperation with the Cyprus Ministry of Interior. It will focus on all three aspects of the Convention, namely “Prevention, Protection and Prosecution.”

Up to 150 seminar participants, including Council of Europe speakers, national officials with expertise in human rights and criminal law and NGO representatives from Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Moldova, Romania, and Ukraine, will examine methods of stopping this ''modern form of slavery.''

Speakers include Council of Europe Deputy Secretary General Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, Special Representative on Combating Trafficking at the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe Eva Biaudet, and Head of Equality Division at the Directorate General of Human Rights of the Council of Europe Marta Requena.

To date, Austria, Moldova and Romania have ratified and 31 other states have signed the Convention.

According to a Council of Europe press release, rough United Nations estimates indicate that between 700,000 to 2 million women alone are illegally trafficked each year. ''The figure is higher when one adds other forms of trafficking, including illicit organ trafficking and children. The annual market in human trafficking is estimated at 32 billion US dollars,'' it adds.

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