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Human trafficking is a crime against humanity. At any given time, an estimated 2.5 million people are trapped in this modern-day slavery. Men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers in their own countries or abroad, finding themselves enslaved in forced labour, domestic servitude or sexual exploitation. Every country in the world is affected by trafficking, whether as a country of origin, transit or destination for victims.

The International Conference on ‘Trafficking in Women and Girls: Meeting the Challenges Together’ was held at UN Headquarters on 5 March 2007, in parallel with the 51st session of the Commission on the Status of Women. It was the first major multi-stakeholder event on trafficking that recognized comprehensive, coordinated and victim-centered approach is needed to countering human trafficking.

In 2010, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons, urging Governments worldwide to take coordinated and consistent measures to defeat this scourge. The Plan calls for integrating the fight against human trafficking into the UN’s broader programmes, to boost development and strengthen security worldwide. One of the crucial provisions in the Plan is the establishment of a UN Voluntary Trust Fund for victims of trafficking, especially women and children.

An appraisal of the progress achieved in the implementation of the Plan is scheduled for 2013. In 2013, the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women will consider the issue of the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls.

This timely interactive dialogue, organized in cooperation with the Group of Friends United against Human Trafficking (which comprises 21 Member States) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), will discuss existing challenges in the context of the implementation of the Plan, and ways of improving the international community’s coordinated efforts to end human trafficking. The outcome of the dialogue can provide a substantive contribution to the next CSW session.



The overall objective of the interactive dialogue is to unite in common endeavour Member States, the UN system, international organizations, civil society, private sector, and the media, to emphasize the value of a comprehensive approach and inclusive international partnerships in effectively fighting global trafficking. Focus on improving prevention of human trafficking and the protection of its victims will provide a result-oriented response to modern challenges. In addition, the meeting will raise visibility and publicise the cause of the UN Voluntary Trust Fund.

The outcome of the dialogue will be a President’s Summary, which will be translated into six official languages.




The interactive dialogue will take place on Tuesday, 3 April 2012 at Conference Room 2 (NLB), UN Headquarters, New York. The meeting will consist of opening and closing sessions and two interactive panel discussions.



The panel session will focus on the following themes:

  • Enhancing political will and commitment to prevent and combat trafficking in persons
  • Strengthening international efforts and collective action by the Member States and other stakeholders, including regional and international organizations, NGOs, the private sector and media
  • Cooperation between governments, private sector and civil society to curb the demand for trafficked victims


The panel session will focus on the following themes:

  • Factors and vulnerability to trafficking
  • Human rights measures that contribute to more effective treatment of victims
  • Role of governments, international organizations and civil society in providing victims of trafficking with access to effective and appropriate remedies
  • Assistance and support to trafficked children
  • UN Trust Fund for victims of trafficking: achievements and perspectives
Following presentations by the panellists, the floor will be open to delegates and other participants to pose questions and to share their experience and perspectives. Delegations are encouraged to engage in an open and interactive discussion. There will be no established list of speakers, and delegations are kindly asked to limit their interventions to a maximum of 3 minutes.



10am – 11 am

Opening Remarks:

H.E. Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, President of the General Assembly
H.E. Mr. Ban Ki‐moon, Secretary‐General
H.E. Mr. Milos Koterec, President of ECOSOC
Mr. Yury Fedotov, Under-Secretary-General, Executive Director of UNODC
Ms. Mira Sorvino, UN Goodwill Ambassador against Human Trafficking

11am – 1pm

Interactive Panel Discussion I:
Protecting the Victims of Trafficking: Partnerships and Innovation

Co-Chairs:  H.E. Mr. Libran N. Cabactulan, Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations
H.E. Mr. Jose Filipe Morales Cabral, Permanent Representative of Portugal to the United Nations

Ms. Michelle Bachelet, UN Under-Secretary General, Executive Director of UN Women
Ms. Alyse Nelson, President of Vital Voices Global Partnership
Mr. M. Cherif Bassiouni, Professor of Law Emeritus, DePaul University College of Law
Mr. David Arkless, President of the Board, EHTN and President of the Government and Corporate Affairs, Manpower Group
Ms. Somaly Mam, Co-Founder & President, Somaly Mam Foundation

3pm – 5:45pm

Interactive Panel Discussion II:
Assistance to the Victims of Trafficking: the Role of Governments, International Organizations, Private Sector and Civil Society

Co-Chairs: H.E. Mr. Antonio Pedro Monteiro Lima, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Cape Verde to the United Nations
H.E. Ms. Sylvie Lucas, Permanent Representative of Luxembourg to the United Nations

Dr. Aleya Hammad, Chair of the Board of Directors, UN Voluntary Trust Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons
Mr. William Lacy Swing, Director-General, IOM
Ms. Rani Hong, Founder, Tronie Foundation
Ms. Maryam Al-Malki, Director-General of Qatar Foundation for Combating Human Trafficking
Dr. Joy Ngozi Ezeilo, Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially in women and children

5:45pm – 6pm

Closing Remarks:

H.E. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, President of the General Assembly



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