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The Red Cross warns against the violence of Croatian border guards against migrants

The Red Cross warns against the violence of Croatian border guards against migrants trying to enter the country from neighboring Bosnia and Herzegovina, AP reports.

The International Federation of ...

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Germans unimpressed with Merkel's rebellious anti-migrant minister Seehofer, poll shows

Angela Merkel’s rebellious interior minister has failed to impress Germans with his hardline stance on migration, according to new polling likely to reinforce the chancellor’s position.  

A ...

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‘New Balkan Route’ for Migrants, Refugees Causes Alarm

A growing number of migrants and refugees using the new Balkan route through Albania, Montenegro and Bosnia to reach the EU raising concerns of a humanitarian and security crisis. Security and human ...

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Cop accused of sex crimes against human trafficking victims

Officer was investigating an Eastern European gang that brought women to Israel for prostitution; is suspended from force

A police officer was arrested Wednesday after he was found to have had ...

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Italian parents under house arrest for forcing 9-year-old into prostitution

The parents of a nine-year-old girl have been placed under house arrest for forcing their daughter into prostitution, police in the southern Italian region of Sicily said on Monday.

Two men aged 63 ...

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Let Europe face up to human trafficking in 2018

Europe’s reception of children seeking refuge is particularly shameful

Last year came to an end with horrific images of slave labour markets in Libya, and a further UN Security Council resolution ...

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Big hit against sexual exploitation: criminal group dismantled in Spain and Romania

Spanish National Police and the Romanian Police have joined forces, supported by Europol and Eurojust, to dismantle an organised crime group involved in trafficking women for sexual exploitation in ...

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European Resource Center

The Red Cross warns against the violence of Croatian border guards against migrants

The Red Cross warns against the violence of Croatian border guards against migrants trying to enter the country from neighboring Bosnia and Herzegovina, AP reports.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has announced that dozens of people who try to cross the border every day must seek doctors’ help for injuries.

Regional Director of the IFRC Europe for Europe Simon Mississi said the government must ensure "dignity and respect" for all people. "The desire to control the state border does not justify violence," he said, AP reports.

The IFRC announced that more than 8,000 people entered BiH this year, an increase of eight times compared to last year, and about 3,000 people in the past four weeks alone. Most of the migrants are from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran or Syria.

Spokeswoman Nicole Robicheau said that some migrants said they were frightened by Croatian border guards, but that the IFRC could not confirm the exact number of people.

(Reference: www.radiosarajevo.ba)

Germans unimpressed with Merkel's rebellious anti-migrant minister Seehofer, poll shows

Angela Merkel’s rebellious interior minister has failed to impress Germans with his hardline stance on migration, according to new polling likely to reinforce the chancellor’s position.  

A survey of public opinion found that Horst Seehofer’s popularity has fallen by a net 16 points with the general public since he started agitating for tougher border controls.

Mr Seehofer’s approval rating has tanked to just 27 per cent, falling faster than Ms Merkel’s. The chancellor also appears to have been slightly damaged by the row, her approval falling 2 per cent to 48 per cent, according to the ARD/Infratest dimap poll.

The results are a blow for Mr Seehofer, who observers say had been taking a hardline stance on border control to shore up the popularity of his right-wing CSU party ahead of regional elections in Bavaria due in the autumn.

Read more: Germans unimpressed with Merkel's rebellious anti-migrant minister Seehofer, poll shows

‘New Balkan Route’ for Migrants, Refugees Causes Alarm

A growing number of migrants and refugees using the new Balkan route through Albania, Montenegro and Bosnia to reach the EU raising concerns of a humanitarian and security crisis. Security and human rights ministers from the region will meet in Sarajevo on June 7 to agree on new measures to tackle the ongoing migrant crisis affecting mostly Bosnia, trading blame on who is responsible for the potential crisis.

The recent rise in people using Albania, Montenegro, Bosnia and partly Serbia as a new transit route to reach Western Europe with the some Balkan country’s accusing each other of not doing enough to protect the borders.

According to the announcement, Bosnian authorities insisted on the regional meeting after complaining about “lack honesty“ in the neighbouring countries and pushing migrants and refugees toward Bosnia.

Read more: ‘New Balkan Route’ for Migrants, Refugees Causes Alarm

Cop accused of sex crimes against human trafficking victims

Officer was investigating an Eastern European gang that brought women to Israel for prostitution; is suspended from force

A police officer was arrested Wednesday after he was found to have had illicit relations with two women who were brought to Israel by a human trafficking gang to become prostitution, Hebrew media reported Thursday.

For the past several weeks police were investigating a human trafficking gang from Eastern Europe and gathering evidence against a number of suspects who were arrested and indicted.

Some of the women were sent to a women’s shelter, and at some point, commanders suspected, one of the interrogators exploited the women.

The policeman, from the central region, was arrested and suspended immediately. Authorities were also about to begin the process of removing him from the police force entirely.

The Justice Ministry’s Police Investigations Department said it had investigated the policeman on suspicion of bribery, disrupting an investigation and sexual offenses against two women brought to Israel by a gang of traffickers for the purpose of prostitution.

“The Israel police received a report today of a policeman who allegedly had forbidden sexual relations with a subject of an investigation,” police said in a statement. “We view the incident, like every incident, extremely seriously, and it does not reflect the values of the police force and counters the integrity expected from every person in general and especially from a law enforcement agent.”

(Reference: www.timesofisrael.com)

Italian parents under house arrest for forcing 9-year-old into prostitution

The parents of a nine-year-old girl have been placed under house arrest for forcing their daughter into prostitution, police in the southern Italian region of Sicily said on Monday.

Two men aged 63 and 79, suspected of paying for sex with the girl, were also put under house arrest, the ANSA news agency said, quoting the Carabinieri police of Partinico, a small town near Palermo.

According to ANSA’s report, the girl’s family is severely deprived.

The child, who has been moved to a foster home, told investigators that the family would receive five euros (6.2 dollars) if she kissed one of the two men, or 25 or 30 euros if she did “something more.”

The Carabinieri’s investigations were prompted by a report from a man who witnessed the girl being abused in the open countryside, in the presence of her father.

(Reference: www.pmnewsnigeria.com)

Let Europe face up to human trafficking in 2018

Europe’s reception of children seeking refuge is particularly shameful

Last year came to an end with horrific images of slave labour markets in Libya, and a further UN Security Council resolution that both condemned human trafficking and expressed grave concern at the exploitation of children forcibly displaced by conflict.

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court described Libya as a marketplace for trafficking in human beings, and a situation that was dire and unacceptable.

And in November the bodies of 26 young Nigerian women were found floating in the Mediterranean – another tragic incident adding to the many left to die while seeking refuge in Europe.

The International Organisation of Migration has estimated that 80 per cent of Nigerian girls arriving in Italy may be victims of trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation.

Most originate from Edo state, in particular the impoverished surroundings of Benin City. Many arrive traumatised and brutalised, yet safety and even a humane and dignified reception in Europe is not guaranteed.

Even those who are victims of the crime of human trafficking may be subject to the now infamous Dublin transfer procedure. In one such case Swedish authorities initiated proceedings to transfer a 28-year-old Nigerian asylum seeker and her six-year-old daughter to Italy despite evidence that she had been repeatedly raped and assaulted by traffickers in Italy in the presence of her daughter.

It was only following the concerted action of a Scandinavian human rights lawyers’ group that further trauma, and a serious risk of re-trafficking, was prevented.

Read more: Let Europe face up to human trafficking in 2018

Big hit against sexual exploitation: criminal group dismantled in Spain and Romania

Spanish National Police and the Romanian Police have joined forces, supported by Europol and Eurojust, to dismantle an organised crime group involved in trafficking women for sexual exploitation in different EU Member States. In total, 11 individuals were arrested and 13 victims were safeguarded.

The investigation began in November 2015. The members of the criminal network recruited their victims in their country of origin using the Loverboy method, by a man who purported to be the victim’s boyfriend and promised her a better life. Once in Spain, the victims were forced into prostitution in Madrid, Ibiza and Asturias. During the course of the investigation, police officers unveiled that some of the victims were forced to undergo plastic surgery. Furthemore, the women had to pay a tax in return of being protected on the street. The organised group extended their activity to Germany, the Czech Republic and the Netherlands.

The money earned through the sexual exploitation of these women was sent back to Romania in cash or through parcel services, where the organised crime group subsequently laundered it by buying properties or high-end vehicles.

Police officers carried out five house searches in Madrid, one in Asturias and six in Romania. As a result, two firearms, over EUR 10 000 in cash, and five vehicles were seized. In total, Operation Hunter resulted in the arrest of seven individuals in Spain and four in Romania. 13 Romanian victims were safeguarded.

Europol supported the investigation by facilitating the exchange of intelligence and analytical support, funding of an operational meeting and the deployment of an analyst to undertake on the spot checks during the action phase in Spain.

(Reference: www.europol.europa.eu)

Safeguarding victims of human trafficking and smuggling priority for international experts

DOHA, Qatar – International experts in human trafficking and migrant smuggling are calling for expanded cross-sector involvement in order to protect the world’s most vulnerable from the exploitation of organized crime groups.
 
With such groups constantly innovating in their pursuit for low-risk, high profit margins, discussions during the 5th edition of the INTERPOL Global Trafficking in Human Beings and Smuggling of Migrants Conference will focus on the essential role both the public and private sector play in preventing, detecting, reporting, disrupting and ultimately prosecuting those responsible for crimes which have no borders, and no limits.
 
Participants will explore emerging trends such as trafficking for forced criminality including drug cultivation or pickpocketing. They will also focus on how the private sector is developing tools to help law enforcement in the disruption of trafficking and smuggling activities.
 
The two-day (6 and 7 December 2017) event, co-hosted by Qatar’s National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking, has gathered more than 300 experts from law enforcement, the public and private sectors, non-governmental and international organizations from 90 countries.

Read more: Safeguarding victims of human trafficking and smuggling priority for international experts

INTERPOL-led operation rescues 500 victims of human trafficking, leads to 40 arrests

COTONOU, Benin – Nearly 500 victims of human trafficking, including 236 minors, have been rescued following an INTERPOL operation carried out simultaneously across Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal.

In total, 40 suspected traffickers were arrested and will now face prosecution for offences including human trafficking, forced labour and child exploitation. They are accused of forcing victims to engage in activities ranging from begging to prostitution, with little to no regard for working conditions or human life.

Read more: INTERPOL-led operation rescues 500 victims of human trafficking, leads to 40 arrests

Regional workshop

Within the regional project of the regional justice sector entitled "Strengthening Criminal Law Institutions and the Rule of Law in Central and Eastern Europe", in the period from 24th-26th October, a regional workshop on the topic "Best Practices and Progress in the Fight Against Smuggling and Trafficking in Human Beings and the Field of Protection of Human Rights and Provision of Services to Victims" is being held in Importanne Resort, Dubrovnik, Croatia.

The aim of this workshop is the development and implementation of the best regional practices and future steps that have been discussed at the first workshop held on May 31st in order to improve the responses to the challenges of smuggling and trafficking in human beings, family and gender-based violence, and the provision of services to victims.

Read more: Regional workshop

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