FILE - The Cairo Criminal Court
CAIRO – 15 July 2018: Giza Criminal Court will consider on Sunday the Human Trafficking case, in which 40 defendants are charged with forming a criminal network for human trafficking and migrant smuggling.
Prosecutor Nabil Sadek said on May 23 that the suspects are also accused of bribery, forging official documents, facilitating illegal immigration, and sex trafficking.
The United Nation defines human trafficking as a series of crimes and violations to human rights, including forcible recruitment and exploitation through prostitution, forced labor, slavery, servitude or the removal of organs, harboring, and forcibly transferring people to receive benefits.
“The common forms of human trafficking in Egypt include trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation of under aged girls through “seasonal / temporary” marriage, child labor, domestic servitude, among other forms of sexual exploitation and prostitution.
There are also indications that trafficking is carried out for the purposes of forced marriages, forced labor, and the transplantation of human organs and body tissues,” according to the UN report issued in 2010.
To combat this phenomenon, Egypt introduced in 2016 a law stiffening penalties against human traffickers. The move came after a migrant boat capsized in September 2016 off the Mediterranean coast, killing hundreds of people.
The law imposes prison terms and fines on those found guilty of smuggling migrants or acting as brokers or middlemen, and prison sentences for those who provide shelters for the trafficked migrants, and those who facilitate their journey.
The law also includes the provisions that protect the rights of migrants and provide them with humanitarian treatment and access to healthcare and legal assistance.
Egypt has already had a law against human trafficking, but the new law mainly focuses on illegal migrants.
In the same context, Amr Abul-Atta, Egypt’s representative in the U.N. Security Council, said on November 21, 2017, that Egypt is exerting great efforts on the local and international levels to confront human trafficking, noting that Egypt sets legal and institutional frameworks to ensure implementing its international commitments.
During the U.N. Security Council’s session on human trafficking, Egypt’s representative added that his country launched a national strategy regarding this issue in October 2016 and started its five-year work plan (2016-2021) that includes various projects and media campaigns to raise awareness on the issue and build the capabilities of people working in that field in Egypt.