The delegation from Sri Lanka attending the Eighth Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime [UNTOC] organized a side event on “International Cooperation on Combating Transnational Organized Crime” on 18 October 2016 as an initiative of the Ministry of Justice of Sri Lanka.The delegation comprising officials from Attorney General’s Department, Sri Lanka Police, Department of Immigration and Emigration,Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment, Department of Legal Draftsman.
With opening remarks, H.E. Mrs. Priyanee Wijesekera, Sri Lanka Ambassador and Permanent Representative in Vienna explained the focus of the event.
Mr. Sarath Jayamanne, PC, Additional Solicitor General outlined the historical evolution of Sri Lanka’s legal framework emphasizing the fact that as a member of the Commonwealth we inherited the presumption of innocence as a basic feature of criminal justice. Therefore confessions are treated as inadmissible. He gave brief outline of Sri Lanka’s legal framework, legislation, judicial proceedings in relation to the transnational organized crime and protecting victims of human trafficking personnel particularly the sexual exploitation of children & women. He referred to the legislation on Sri Lanka victim’s right bill which was ratified recently aiming to uphold and enforce the rights and entitlement of victims of crimes and witnesses. Mr. Jayamanne stressed the importance of international cooperation on mutual legal assistance to combat transnational organized crimes and countries assisting each other in law enforcement matters.
Additional General Manager of the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment, Mrs. M.A.C.K. Premasiri, described the Bureau’s role in regulating the employment agencies, controlling recruitment, complaint handling mechanisms, settlement of disputes. She also highlighted Sri Lanka’s recent progress at the ‘Colombo Process’ with regard to prevention of human trafficking and emphasized the local mechanism of monitoring Sri Lanka’s progress on combating human trafficking through the ‘National Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force’.
The Deputy Controller of the Department of Immigration and Emigration, Mr. A.H.L. De Soysa outlined the challenges and sketched the measures taken by the GoSL to combat the human trafficking within the framework of Immigration and Emigration law of Sri Lanka.
The Assistant Legal Draftsman of the Department of Legal Draftsman described her Department’s role of transforming national policies on human trafficking into law through legislation.
Embassy of Sri Lanka
26th October 2016