The closing conference of the Bulgarian – Swiss programme for cooperation in combating trafficking in human beings will take place in Sofia

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The National Commission for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings (NCCTHB), in partnership with the Association Animus Foundation and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), organizes the closing conference of the Bulgarian – Swiss programme for cooperation in combating trafficking in human beings and reintegration of the victims. The event will be held on 20th September 2018, with the support of the Bulgarian – Swiss program.

The event will be opened by Mr. Krasimir Cipov, Deputy-Minister of the Interior and member of the NCCTHB, Mrs. Muriel Berset Kohen – the ambassador of the Swiss Confederation to Bulgaria, Mr. Victor Prestel of the Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC), and Ms. Kamelia Dimitrova, Executive Secretary of the National Commission.

In the past years, Bulgaria and Switzerland have been acting together towards prevention, identification and protection of the victims of human trafficking. Among the priorities of the NCCTHB have been targeted information campaigns and activities for prevention of trafficking in human beings as well as providing comprehensive protection and security of the victims of this crime.

The current programme was implemented in the period of 2015 – 2018 within the Thematic Fund of Security of the Bulgarian –Swiss programme for cooperation. As a result of these joint efforts, the capacity for accommodation of victims of trafficking in Bulgaria was doubled. Two specialized centers were opened: a crisis center for children and a shelter for people – victims of trafficking in the summer of 2017; since their opening, 17 people and 7 children – victims of trafficking received support. A practical guide for identification, protection and returning in Bulgaria of victims of trafficking in Switzerland has been developed which guarantees the rights of the victims and synchronizes the actions of the institutions on both sides. Pilot initiatives and innovative approaches of combating trafficking in human beings have been implemented.

According to the data of the European Commission, for the period 2013-2014, 15,846 people were identified as victims of trafficking in the European Union, 67% of them being victims of sexual exploitation and 21% victims of trafficking for labour exploitation.