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SL still to meet min. standards to end human trafficking: US

1 July 2016 01:16 pm - 10     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The Sri Lankan government has not fully met with the minimum standards for the elimination of human trafficking but it is making significant efforts to do so, the Annual Trafficking in Persons Report released by US State Secretary John Kerry revealed yesterday.  

It said Sri Lanka is primarily a source and, to a lesser extent, a destination country, for men, women, and children subjected to forced labor and sex trafficking.

“Some of the Sri Lankan men, women, and children who migrate to the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and Afghanistan to work in the construction, garment, and domestic service sectors are subjected to forced labor. Before leaving Sri Lanka, many migrant workers go into debt to pay high recruitment fees imposed by unscrupulous labor recruitment agencies—most of them members of Sri Lanka’s Association of Licensed Foreign Employment Agencies—and their unlicensed sub-agents.

Migrant laborers receive a monetary advance as an incentive to move abroad, only to be trapped in debt bondage upon arrival at their destination. Some recruitment agencies commit fraud by changing the agreed upon job, employer, conditions, or salary after the migrant’s arrival. Some Sri Lankan women are subjected to forced prostitution in Jordan, Maldives, Malaysia, Singapore, and elsewhere. Within the country, women and children are subjected to sex trafficking in brothels. Boys are more likely than girls to be forced into prostitution in coastal areas for child sex tourism. Children, individuals with physical deformities, and those from socially vulnerable groups are forced to beg or engage in criminal activity in Sri Lanka’s largest cities.

Some child domestic workers in Colombo, generally from the Tamil tea estate sector, are subjected to physical, sexual, and mental abuse, non-payment of wages, and restrictions of movement— indicators of labor trafficking. A small number of women from Asia, Central Asia, Europe, and the Middle East have been subjected to forced prostitution in Sri Lanka in recent years.

Police accept bribes to permit brothels to operate, some of which 347 exploit trafficking victims. Sub-agents collude with officials to procure fake or falsified travel documents to facilitate travel of Sri Lankans abroad.

During the reporting period, the government ratified the 2000 UN TIP Protocol and the Cabinet approved the government’s national action plan to combat human trafficking. Despite these measures, the government did not demonstrate overall increasing anti-trafficking efforts compared to the previous reporting period; therefore Sri Lanka is placed on Tier 2 Watch List for the fourth consecutive year.

Per the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, Sri Lanka was granted a waiver from an otherwise required downgrade to Tier 3 because its government has devoted sufficient resources to a written plan that, if implemented, would constitute significant efforts to meet the minimum standards. Authorities slightly increased investigations and prosecutions of trafficking cases; however, convictions stagnated at one trafficker convicted—the same number as in 2014—and the sentence of two years’ imprisonment was not sufficiently stringent to deter future trafficking crimes.

Provisions for victim protection were inadequate, as the government arrested sex trafficking victims and charged them with crimes committed as a direct result of being subjected to trafficking, provided no specialized services to male victims, and mixed child victims with criminals in state institutions,” the report said in its comments on Sri Lanka.

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  Comments - 10

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  • Padma Saturday, 02 July 2016 01:13 AM

    It is time that some one had noticed and taken up these issues. Only the victims who have undergone these know the misery. Lets face the reality instead of simply denying, They needs to be addressed and corrected for the betterment of the people of Sri Lanka. .

    Jamis Banda Friday, 01 July 2016 01:40 PM

    The Sri Lankan Govt. is all talk. No action!

    rosebud Friday, 01 July 2016 02:15 PM

    Mr Kerry Im sure you have all these problems in your country too. Why dont you put your own house in order before preaching to others via DM Android App

    kara Friday, 01 July 2016 02:30 PM

    Mr Kerry , do you know how many rape cases for day in USA ?. Number of Bobs dropped on childrent in Last 10 years. Sri Lanka never send child labours out. who goes to Afganistthan - Are you kidding or Joking ? - Are you trying to stop revenue comming to Sri Lanka from our skill labour which is main source of income so that Sri Lanka will be poor country.

    Aruna Friday, 01 July 2016 03:07 PM

    The new regime made no single rehabilitation center, no development in Northern Sri Lanka. However keep planning till the end of their term.

    lkboy Friday, 01 July 2016 03:12 PM

    This is a bad mark for good governance too.

    Latley Gunasekera Friday, 01 July 2016 03:14 PM

    Warning signal!!! Most think tanks agree with this comments.

    kk Friday, 01 July 2016 03:42 PM

    who is the under ground organizer for 9 11 that US via DM Android App

    US_Mo Friday, 01 July 2016 04:24 PM

    There are Sri Lankan work in Afganistan (US Army campus and Afgan)

    Bible hypocrites Friday, 01 July 2016 05:34 PM

    Shut up you American pigs only thing you guys are good at misleading the people and preaching hate in your churches


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