EC launches dedicated website to fight human trafficking

On 21 December, Commissioner Malmström officially launched the new website dedicated to the fight against trafficking in human beings, a tool which aims at supporting actions in this field. Commissioner Malström was backed by Myria Vassiliadou, the new Anti Trafficking Coordinator, who will act in order to strengthen EU action against human trafficking

The EU Anti Trafficking Website should become a one stop shop at EU level for practitioners and the public interested in knowing more about trafficking and how it is being addressed within the EU. The website will include national information pages of all EU Member States with factual information on legislation, action plans, coordination, prevention, assistance and support to victims, investigation and prosecution and international coordination.

This new website will help raising awareness about human trafficking, while also contributing to the cooperation and mutual understanding among law enforcement agencies, national authorities and others.

At the official launch of the website Commissioner Malmström reminded that the fight against trafficking in human beings is one of Commission's top priorities. The European Union has made a decisive step forward in the harmonisation of policies in this field, thanks to the recent vote made by the European Parliament which endorsed the proposal for a Directive on trafficking in human beings put forward by the European Commission in March 2010.

This Directive will oblige EU Member States to act on three fronts: prosecuting criminals responsible for trafficking human beings, protecting the victims and preventing the offences. Once the text is formally adopted by the Council, Member States will have up to two years to comply with the new rules, which will replace current EU legislation dating from 2002 and will apply to all EU Member States except Denmark and the United Kingdom.

The EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, Myria Vassiliadou, who will get a central role in the coordination of EU policies within this field, also welcomed the initiative highlighting that she will do her best to ensure coherence and efficiency of both policies and efforts of those involved in the fight against human trafficking within the EU.