NATO - North Atlantic Treaty Organisation

13 Feb. 2008

Senior NATO representative attends international forum on human trafficking

NATO’s Senior Coordinator on Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, Assistant Secretary General Jiri Sedivy, participated in the Vienna Forum organized within the framework of the UN Global Initiative to Fight Trafficking. The event,, which took place from 13 to 15 February 2008, brought together representatives from 116 countries and a number of international organizations.

The Forum aimed to raise awareness of all forms and dimensions of trafficking, enhance cooperation, and establish new partnerships among participants. Taking in to account the lessons learned, the Forum set its sights on establishing a direction for future actions and ways to counter human trafficking.

Speaking at the plenary session of the Forum, Ambassador Sedivy outlined NATO’s policy on combating trafficking in human beings. He emphasized that the Allies follow a zero-tolerance policy in terms of involvement of troops in human trafficking.

He also informed the Forum on the work carried out by NATO-led troops in the theater of operations concerning the broader fight against human trafficking. The latter work is implemented in close coordination and in assistance to the relevant local and international law enforcement agencies, within the relevant mandate of the specific operations.

NATO’s policy on combating human trafficking was first endorsed by Allied leaders at the Istanbul Summit in June 2004 and is being strengthened following a comprehensive review in 2007.

Jiri Sedivy succeeded John Colston as NATO Assistant Secretary General for Defence Policy and Planning and Senior Coordinator on Combating Trafficking in Human Beings on 29 October 2007.