Trafficking in persons: first official visit to the Bahamas by a UN independent expert

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GENEVA (3 December 2013) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, Joy Ngozi Ezeilo, will undertake an official visit the Commonwealth of the Bahamas from 9 to 11 December 2013. Her visit will be the first ever to the Caribbean country by an independent expert of the UN Human Rights Council.

“I will study the situation of trafficking of women, men and children in the Bahamas, and assess the State’s responses to counter trafficking in persons and protect the human rights of its victims,” said Ms. Ezeilo, who visits the country at the invitation of the Government.

The UN Special Rapporteur is mandated by the UN Human Rights Council to prevent and fight trafficking in persons in all its forms, and to encourage measures to uphold and protect the human rights of victims.

During her three-day visit, the human rights expert will meet with representatives of various Government agencies, as well as members of international and civil society organizations working on the fight against trafficking in persons.

“I look forward to my discussions with the Government and all relevant authorities and to engage with them in a collective effort to fight all forms of human trafficking in the Bahamas,” she said.

At the end of her visit, on Wednesday 11 December, the Special Rapporteur will hold a press conference at the British Colonial Hilton Hotel in Nassau, at 12:00 pm.

Ms. Ezeilo’s will present her final observations and recommendations to the UN Human Rights Council in June 2014.

Joy Ngozi Ezeilo (Nigeria) started her mandate as Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially in women and children in August 2008. Ms. Ezeilo is a human rights lawyer and professor at the University of Nigeria. She has served in various governmental capacities and consulted for various international organizations, and is currently involved in several NGOs, particularly working on women’s rights. She has published extensively on a variety of topics, including human rights, women’s rights, and Sharia law. Ms. Ezeilo was conferred with a national honour (Officer of the Order of Nigeria) in 2006 for her work as a human right defender. Learn more, log on to: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Trafficking/Pages/TraffickingIndex.aspx
 
OHCHR Country Page – Bahamas: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/LACRegion/Pages/BSIndex.aspx

For more information and media requests, please contact:
In Geneva: Pol Planas (+41 22 917 9657 / pplanas@ohchr.org) or write to srtrafficking@ohchr.org)
In Nassau: Yaye Ba (+41 79 201 01 19 / yba@ohchr.org)

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