JAKARTA, 25 January 2016 – Cambodia and Singapore have deposited their respective Instruments of Ratification for the ASEAN Convention Against Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children (ACTIP) with H.E. Le Luong Minh, Secretary-General of ASEAN. The ACTIP, which was signed by the ASEAN Leaders at the 27th ASEAN Summit in November 2015, demonstrates ASEAN’s commitment in addressing trafficking in persons as a regional problem and resolve to find the most effective regional solution to combat this problem.

The ACTIP, which is the first regionally binding instrument on trafficking in persons aims to prevent and combat trafficking in persons, especially women and children, and ensure just and effective punishment of traffickers; protect and assist victims of trafficking in persons with full respect for their human rights; and promote cooperation in the fight against trafficking in persons among the ASEAN Member States.

Calling on the Secretary-General of ASEAN to deposit the Instrument of Ratification of Singapore, the Permanent Representative of Singapore to ASEAN, H.E. Ambassador Tan Hung Seng said that “Singapore has underscored its strong commitment to cooperate with our regional partners to jointly tackle trafficking in persons by being one of the first ASEAN Member States to ratify the ACTIP. Trafficking in persons is a transnational issue that requires a global effort by all countries – whether source, transit or destination – to break the vicious cycle of human trafficking. Singapore has worked closely with the other ASEAN Member States to draft the ACTIP, which is an important and significant step taken by ASEAN to combat trafficking in persons in the region. Singapore also works closely with international partners such as INTERPOL, UNODC and Group of Friends against TIP, to tackle the issue at the global level.”

SG Minh stressed that “the implementation of the ACTIP would serve as the legal basis for ASEAN Member States to fall back on when facing security challenges relevant to the problem of trafficking in persons.” SG Minh also looked forward to the early ratification of the ACTIP by the other ASEAN Member States in order for the Convention to enter into force and be implemented as soon as possible.

The ACTIP will take effect in 30 days once the sixth ASEAN Member State deposits the instrument of ratification of the Convention.

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