Trafficking in Persons Interim Assessment - Moldova
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Publication Date||24 February 2010|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Interim Assessment - Moldova, 24 February 2010, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4b8e7a71c.html [accessed 1 August 2015]|
[From the introductory text accompanying this report on the U.S. Department of State website: "In most cases, the Interim Assessment is intended to serve as a tool by which to gauge the anti-trafficking progress of countries that may be in danger of slipping a tier in the upcoming June 2010 TIP Report and to give them guidance on how to avoid a Tier 3 ranking. It is a tightly focused progress report, assessing the concrete actions a government has taken to address the key deficiencies highlighted in the June 2009 TIP Report. The Interim Assessment covers actions undertaken between the beginning of May – the cutoff for data covered in the June TIP Report – and November. Readers are requested to refer to the annual TIP Report for an analysis of large-scale efforts and a description of the trafficking problem in each particular country or territory."]
The Government of Moldova has made uneven progress in addressing trafficking in persons since the release of the 2009 TIP Report. The new government made some improvements in victim identification and increased funding for victim assistance, and it demonstrated a high-level commitment to trafficking by establishing a cabinet-level national committee on trafficking led by the foreign minister. Nonetheless, concrete improvements in trafficking- related complicity and victim protection have yet to be realized.
The Government of Moldova reported improvements in its collection and analysis of trafficking statistics and prosecuted 62 and convicted 37 trafficking offenders during the first 11 months of 2009. It did not, however, provide information on the length of sentences or the number of convicted traffickers serving time in prison. NGOs continued to express concerns regarding police downgrading trafficking for sexual exploitation cases to pimping or illegal migration, and trafficking for forced labor cases to illegal migration. A recent upgrading of a case from pimping to trafficking, under prosecutor pressure, is a welcome development. During the reporting period, the government provided $61,800 to its assistance and protection center in Chisinau, an increase from the previous year. An NGO reported the government provided free access to vocational training and issuance of national identification and health insurance to trafficking victims. NGOs believe that victims are often subject to subtle or direct threats against themselves or family members from traffickers and indicated that risk assessments for victim witnesses are rarely undertaken by the government. The government has yet to address ongoing concerns about the lack of specialized protections for child victims of trafficking; children are often interviewed multiple times over the course of several hours by police without special training and some are confronted and threatened by their traffickers. The government indicated its intention to re-open a high-profile case involving allegations of trafficking-related official complicity; it has not prosecuted or convicted any government officials for their involvement in trafficking-related corruption, however.