Last Updated: Thursday, 26 May 2016, 08:56 GMT

U.S. Department of State 2002 Trafficking in Persons Report - Turkey

Publisher United States Department of State
Author Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
Publication Date 5 June 2002
Cite as United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2002 Trafficking in Persons Report - Turkey, 5 June 2002, available at: [accessed 27 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Turkey (Tier 3)

Turkey is a minor country of destination, and transit to other European destinations, for women and girls trafficked into sexual exploitation. Most come from countries of the former Soviet Union, including Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia, Ukraine, and Moldova.

The Government of Turkey does not fully comply with minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so. Turkey has no law against trafficking, although draft anti-trafficking legislation is on the Parliamentary agenda. Other laws against organized crime, pimping, child prostitution, and forced labor can be used against traffickers. Police in Istanbul report that operations against traffickers have led to scores of arrests. In one case, police freed 15 victims of trafficking in the Black Sea region. The Ukrainian government reported that Turkish cooperation led to the arrest of a trafficking ring in Ukraine. Some law enforcement officials tolerate foreigners working in commercial sex, but no evidence shows official involvement in trafficking per se. With respect to protection of victims, the government provides no social services or shelters for victims. Foreign trafficking victims may use one of the eight government battered-women shelters for Turkish citizens, but in practice have difficulty gaining access. Trafficking victims are generally detained and deported, although they may be held longer to give testimony for an investigation. Regarding prevention, the government is working on a National Action Plan to study the problem and offer remedies; however efforts thus far have been limited to a few ad hoc public education campaigns at the local level. The government's current prevention strategy involves strict regulations for immigrants, including deporting all foreigners found in commercial sex work and prohibiting their re-entry into the country; however, the government makes no effort to screen deportees for possible trafficking victims, and thus to protect trafficking victims.

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