WAM DUBAI, July 4th, 2013 (WAM) — An awareness campaign on combating human trafficking was launched today by Dr. Anwar Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs and Chairman of the National Committee to Combat Trafficking.
In his remarks at a press conference following the launch of the campaign at Dubai International Airport, Dr. Gargash said that the UAE appreciates international efforts to fight these crimes, and is fully aware of the multiple challenges and complexities facing countries and governments around the world.
“The UAE is therefore determined to address all the concerns related to this issue affecting humanity and will continue to maintain a constructive dialogue with all the members of the international community to eliminate human trafficking,” he said.
The campaign, organised by the National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking, covers a comprehensive target audience comprising large segments of the UAE’s citizens and residents as well as visitors to the country.
“It is for this reason that we thought of the Dubai International Airport as the ideal location to launch this initiative, considering that it is one of the busiest airports in the world, having received as many as 57.6 million passengers in 2012,” he explained.
The minister emphasised that raising community awareness represents one of the most important elements in ongoing activities to combat crimes related to human trafficking. The campaign aims to strengthen the UAE’s position in global efforts to control this menace.
He said, “Human trafficking is a national issue affecting the social fabric of the country, and the wise leadership of the United Arab Emirates has taken up the fight against such trans-national crimes as a priority in order to safeguard society.
“The campaign against human trafficking highlights the significant role played by the UAE in raising the level of awareness among all sectors of society about the threat posed by this criminal activity. It also confirms the UAE’s determination to tackle these crimes through channels of legislative, executive and international cooperation.” The minister pointed out that “The media is playing a pro-active role in supporting the ongoing efforts to control such crimes. Considering the media’s ability to influence all segments of society, it has a responsibility to find innovative ways to convey relevant information to its audience which would serve to reinforce the campaign against such crimes. Therefore, the media is a key partner for us in this campaign as well as other similar campaigns and future initiatives,” he added.
Dr. Gargash further emphasised that the measures adopted by the UAE against these crimes are established on the foundations of legal mechanisms and social support, and implemented in coordination with a number of relevant institutions.
“Based on the constructive criticism and support from our partners and the international community, the UAE is determined to take forward its programmes on combating human trafficking,” he noted.
He pointed out that the UAE has taken major steps in this direction through the National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking, following the amendment of Federal Law No. 51, which made it possible to better safeguard the victims of such crimes in accordance with the Palermo Protocol, ratified by the UAE in 2009.
According to the minister, the committee also organised a number of workshops and training programmes to enhance the capabilities and skills of employees who are in charge of implementing the laws related to such crimes.
“Besides, the UAE has always been keen to adopt the best international practices by adhering to the principles of the United Nations, and this is reflected in the new strategy of the National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking, which is based on the so-called “Five Ps” of Prevention, Prosecution, Punishment, Protection and Promotion (of international co-operation), and in line with international best practices in this field,” the minister added.
He noted that H.H Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler’s Representative in the Western Region, has recently issued a resolution for establishing a centre for adult male victims of human trafficking and sexual abuse.
Minister Gargash expressed great appreciation for Sheikh Hamdan’s decision and said it is consistent with the stand adopted by the UAE to fight human trafficking crimes, and reduce its impact on society through partnerships and agreements between competent authorities in the country.