Anti-trafficking revised law to be instituted

lllegal migrants from Myanmar sit on a bus as they travel to a district court at Tha Sala police station in Nakorn Si Thammarat province in Thailand, on 6 May 2017. Photo: REUTERS
lllegal migrants from Myanmar sit on a bus as they travel to a district court at Tha Sala police station in Nakorn Si Thammarat province in Thailand, on 6 May 2017. Photo: REUTERS

The Anti-trafficking in Persons Revised Law is expected to be approved by parliament in early 2018, said U Khin Maung Kywel, police superintendent of the anti-human trafficking police force.
“The amended law has been submitted to Hluttaw and it is likely to be approved in early 2018, he said.
The Anti-trafficking in Persons Law was enacted in September 2015 and was revised after seeing the merits and demerits that were revealed after the original law came into force.
“There is no remarkable amendment regarding crime and actions, but a new chapter was embodied in this law. In the current Anti-trafficking in Persons Law, anti-human trafficking police can firstly only report suspicious situations. According to the new chapter, they will be authorised to follow up, investigate and then take action against traffickers”, said Khin Maung Kywel.
The amended law was jointly formulated by local and international experts. The Union Attorney General’s Office, the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Police Force, the Myanmar Police Force, the International Labour Organization and UNICEF conducted frequent negotiation meetings.
According to trafficking victim statistics released by the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Police Force, there were 102 crimes in 2013, 124 crimes in 2014, 131 crimes in 2015 and 2016 and 290 crimes this year as of November 2017.
The area where the highest number of cases occurred was Yangon Region with 54 cases, followed by Shan State with 52 cases. Twenty-nine trafficking-in-persons cases were reported in Kachin State, while Ayeyawady and Mandalay regions recorded 18 and 14 cases respectively. The Myanmar Police Force has taken action against a total of 609 people suspected of human trafficking.
“Punishment and sentences against human traffickers should be as they deserve. We hope to have more updated law”, said Daw Mi Ki Kyaw Myint from the Asia Foundation.
According to the 2016 Trafficking in Persons Report, there are seven types of trafficking crimes, with 69.7 per cent of trafficking caused by forced marriage, 13.6 per cent by the sex trade, 10 per cent by labour exploitation and forced labour, 4.8 per cent by child trafficking, 1.4 per cent by slavery, 0.3 per cent by forced fostering and 0.2 per cent by sexual exploitation.
According to reports of transnational human trafficking, 80 per cent of victims are traded to China, 10 per cent to Thailand, and 6 per cent to Malaysia. Domestically, there is 4 per cent occurence of domestic trafficking in persons. Women account for 85 per cent of trafficking victims, including minor females. Child trafficking constitutes 4.38 per cent of the crimes.
Myanmar cooperated with China and Thailand to combat trafficking in persons, opening liaison offices. Myanmar is one of the anti-trafficking actors in the region and Great Mekong Sub-region.

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