Expert Meeting Regarding Migrant Smuggling and Human Trafficking

On 15 June from 2-4pm, The Hague Institute organized a closed expert meeting on “T-STAN: Toolkit on Smuggling and Trafficking, and a Security and Rule of Law Approach to Their Possible Nexus – with a Focus on the Route from Libya to the EU”. The main aim of this meeting, which took place under Chatham House rule, was to engage approximately 25 researchers, policymakers, practitioners from courts and tribunals, and civil society representatives to validate preliminary research findings, ensure integration of the findings into policy processes, and further engage all these important stakeholders in an informal network for this project.

Amongst other deliverables, this project will develop a new, evidence-based toolkit for Dutch, EU and UN policymakers that gives due respect to anti-human trafficking responsibilities in anti-migrant smuggling policies and efforts with a focus on the route from Libya to the EU. The toolkit aims to provide conceptual and practical clarity for the aforementioned policymakers and to raise awareness about two crimes that are often confused, i.e. smuggling and trafficking. It also explores the potential nexus between these two crimes, and suggest comprehensive approaches to tackle both crimes as well as their possible nexus.

The expert meeting adequately focused on discussions about topics such as definitional issues regarding migrant smuggling and human trafficking and a possible smuggling-trafficking nexus; project methodology; and the potential effects of policies that emphasize security measures.

In the coming weeks, the project team will incorporate the feedback and suggestions provided by the experts. On 31 August 2017 from 1-5pm, findings of this project will be presented during the final workshop. This NWO-Wotro funded project is executed in a partnership between The Hague Institute and Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime (03 April 2017 to 03 September 2017).

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