Peace Support Areas

Funded by
the European Commission
Trafficking in Human Beings and Peace-Support Operations:
pre-deployment / in-service training programme
for international law-enforcement personnel


Trafficking in human beings (THB) is one of the most heinous form of transnational organized crime.

Victims of trafficking - men, women, and children - are betrayed and demeaned in profound ways. THB victims are stripped of their most basic human rights, those of self-determination and in many cases life itself.

One aspect of this phenomenon that is at the earliest stages of recognition is the trafficking in human beings into peace support operations (PSOs) areas. Three observations characterize the relations between peace support operations and trafficking in human beings.

First, in contemporary PSOs the international community is the primary (or only) source of law enforcement, making PSOs the primary law enforcement authority for combating trafficking. Second, because PSOs staff is paid at a high wage in the context of the localities in which they serve, they may knowingly or unknowingly serve as a primary source of demand for trafficked persons in brothels and domestic labour, for example. Finally, in some cases, members of PSOs have been implicated in trafficking themselves.

Despite the best efforts of some member states and related institutions, strategies to form a comprehensive anti-trafficking framework for PSOs are falling well short of the demand. The deficiencies include uneven application of existing training regimens within and across institutions, a failure to engage local institutions in a fruitful manner, and a lack of knowledge of ongoing or proposed training curricula across measures of effectiveness.


UNICRI carried out a first project - funded by the EC under the AGIS Programme 2003 and implemented in partnership with the Universities of Essex and Turin, and the European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control (HEUNI) - aimed at countering organized crime and criminal networks involved in THB in peace support mission areas by improving information and awareness of the problem and creating and bolstering anti-trafficking capacities through a proper training manual for international law enforcement personnel participating in PSOs.

The training manual addresses the trafficking situation in PSOs in the Balkans. Nevertheless, the lessons learned in the region can be extended in order to create a fully implemented training program for all members of other current and future PSOs. The training material also includes a list of relevant international, regional and domestic legislation; an accurate description of the NGOs working on the field; a brief report of the situation of the country/areas of PSO; and a further list of bibliography on the topic, including UN and other international or regional organizations' reports as well as author books and articles.

With the financial support of the European Commission (AGIS Programme 2005), in partnership with the University of Turin, the European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control (HEUNI) and the Dutch Centre for International Police Cooperation (NCIPS), UNICRI delivered a pre-deployment and in-service training programme for international law-enforcement personnel coming from EU and candidate countries. The training programme delivered three 3-day-training seminars on the topic of THB in PSOs, targeted in particular to police officers, deployed or going to be, in peace-support missions through the South-Eastern European region.

The training courses were held at the UNICRI HQ in Turin, Italy, and involved a total of 35 participants from 17 countries (Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands and United Kingdom):
  • 1st course (16-18 May 2006)
  • 2nd course (21-23 June 2006)
  • 3rd course (26-28 June 2006)

    In July 2006, on the basis of inputs and comments from participants and trainers, UNICRI has updated and revised the first edition of the manual.

    [ photo gallery ]     [ participants' profile ]


Training Manual on Trafficking in Human Beings in Peace Support Operations (July 2006)

Click here to see the table of contents of the Core Module.
Click here to see the table of contents of the Law Enforcement Training Module.


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