Manama, June 15 (BNA): Bahrain maintained its position in addressing and combating the crime of human trafficking, achieving first place for the sixth year in a row in the US State Department report on combating human trafficking for the year 2023. The report is the highest annual international ranking in this field.
This achievement reflects the Kingdom’s commitment to supporting and protecting the rights of individuals, by strengthening institutions and accountability.
Bahrain has established an integrated institutional structure to maintain a solid legislative and procedural ground that provides prevention, protection, justice and redress for all parties to work without discrimination.
The Kingdom continues to develop procedures and procedures based on respect for civil, economic and religious rights and social freedoms in accordance with the provisions of the constitutional and legal frameworks and international covenants.
The report highlighted the Kingdom’s institutionalization of efforts to combat human trafficking, facilitating prevention and protection measures, expanding procedures that guarantee justice and fairness for victims, and holding perpetrators of human trafficking crimes accountable and forced labour. Providing support and assistance to the victims to overcome the psychological and social repercussions of this crime.
The report highlighted the steps taken by the Kingdom to promote justice, including the establishment of the first public prosecution specialized in human trafficking, and the allocation of a court to adjudicate crimes referred by the prosecution, to expedite legal procedures in investigation and adjudication by a specialized judicial cadre, in addition to the establishment of victims’ relief funds. .
The US State Department outlined the Kingdom’s efforts to initiate the establishment of the Office for the Protection of Witnesses and Victims of Human Trafficking, which acts as a point of contact with the Public Prosecution, by examining requests and submitting the necessary requests to take the necessary measures. Measures to protect victims and witnesses in human trafficking cases at all stages of the case, with the aim of helping them recover from the psychological and financial repercussions, and suggesting measures and actions to be taken to protect them.
The report indicated that the Kingdom seeks to address illegal practices in the labor market within legal frameworks, by introducing a labor registration program based on a partnership between the public and private sectors.
It also highlighted the initiative to provide administrative assistance in filing civil lawsuits for workers registered in labor registration centers approved by the Labor Market Regulatory Authority, which comes as a continuation of the initiative to provide administrative assistance to workers in filing labor lawsuits. Through an electronic system, in addition to providing all the required information, starting from the filing of the lawsuit until the issuance of the judgment.
The report reviewed the Kingdom of Bahrain’s efforts to raise awareness in the field of combating human trafficking at the national and regional levels, through holding training courses and programs by the Regional Center for Excellence and Capacity Building for Combating Human Trafficking, which aim to identify crime and all its forms. As well as raising the capabilities of the front lines, especially in police stations, hospitals and health centers, to identify victims or potential victims, in addition to qualifying and training trainers and experts in this field.
The US State Department report also highlighted the development of a number of preventive measures that enhance worker protection and prevent forced labor and other forms of human trafficking, including the Wage Protection System, which requires all employers to pay wages through an electronic device. A system that enables the Labor Market Regulatory Authority to follow up on companies’ commitment to pay wages on time, to enhance levels of transparency and contribute to reducing labor disputes related to wages and speeding up their resolution.
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