THE US State Department on Tuesday released its 2022 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report that declared Pakistan remains on Tier 2, however, was upgraded in status by being taken off the “watchlist”.
According to the report, Pakistan demonstrated overall better efforts including increasing investigations, prosecutions and convictions against human trafficking compared to the previous reporting period.
Recognition of progress by the US State Department is an important development and really implies that the country has done something to curb this menace, which in fact destroyed the life of hundreds of thousands of young men and women.
However, there is no need to be complacent at all. The countries categorized under Tier 2 are those governments that do not fully meet the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but are making significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance.
Hence more efforts are required on the part of our federal and provincial governments to save our youths from the evil hands of these traffickers.
A recent report released by the HRCP painted a grim picture of women trafficking in the country.
The report identified Pakistan as a source, transit and destination for human trafficking which indicates the danger women, particularly economically vulnerable ones, find themselves in.
Across the country, scores of women are abducted each year which are then coerced into sex trafficking, bonded labour, forced begging and forced marriages.
Then our young men are also often preyed on by these traffickers and lured with false promises of better fortunes abroad, especially Europe.
In this illegal journey, there are also instances where many of them lost their lives. Apart from creating greater awareness amongst the population against the trafficking, the relevant authorities, especially the FIA, needs to be further strengthened to put an end to trafficking.
Apart from coming up with a comprehensive legal regime against the issue, there is a need to enhance the level of cooperation with Iran to curb the human trafficking through land routes.