This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS BRATISLAVA 000298
G/TIP FOR JENNIFER TOPPING ECA/PE/V/R/E FOR NAOMI FEIGENBAUM
E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: PGOV PHUM SMIG KPAO LO SUBJECT: NEW HIGH-LEVEL GROUP WILL COORDINATE ACTION ON TIP
1. At its March 31 meeting, the Slovak Government's Council for the Prevention of Criminality decided to form an expert working group on trafficking in persons. The Council is a high-level body composed of 23 representatives from ministries, government agencies, law enforcement bodies, and NGOs. Interior Minister Vladimir Palko is its Chairperson, and Justice Minister Daniel Lipsic is the Vice Chair. The Council meets quarterly to coordinate government policies on fighting crime.
2. The expert group on TIP will be led by Anna Babincova, Director of the Police Anti-trafficking unit. Jana Siposova, director of the NGO "Victim Support Slovakia" (and a former International Visitor grantee on an anti-TIP program) will be its vice-chair. All the relevant ministries, including Justice, Labor, Interior, and Education will be represented. The purpose of the group is to develop a national action plan to combat trafficking in persons and to increase coordination throughout the government and with NGO partners. Its first meeting is set for May 2.
3. This expert group is the first government-wide high-level body to focus exclusively on the issue of trafficking in persons. In notifying emboff April 14 of the group's formation, Secretary of the Council for Prevention of Criminality Frantisek Sinka promised to keep the embassy informed about the meetings. Siposova told emboffs the same day that the initiative will serve to increase interest in TIP throughout the government. She expects it will help the GOS systematically and effectively prioritize funding for TIP.
4. Comment: In a February letter to Charge, Interior Minister Palko promised to improve governmental coordination on TIP. This step is a relection of that commitment, and the result of many months of aggressive Embassy lobbying for the GOS to appoint a high-level coordinator. The fact that the top two members of the working group come from the police and an NGO is further proof of improved cooperation between the police and NGO's.