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Cablegate: Updated Seventh Annual Anti-Trafficking In

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DE RUEHRK #0090/01 0891351
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O 301351Z MAR 07
FM AMEMBASSY REYKJAVIK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3223
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RUEHC/DEPT OF LABOR WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RUEAHLC/HOMELAND SECURITY CENTER WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 11 REYKJAVIK 000090

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE, SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR EUR/NB:JMAHER, G/TIP, G, INL, DRL, PRM, IWI, AND EUR/PGI
STATE PASS USAID

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM KCRM KWMN ELAB SMIG ASEC KFRD PREF IC
SUBJECT: UPDATED SEVENTH ANNUAL ANTI-TRAFFICKING IN
PERSONS (TIP) REPORT FOR ICELAND

REFS: A) 06 STATE 202745 B) Reykjavik 49 C) FEvans-MHall
emails

1. (SBU) Updated report reflects changes in the
prostitution law, and two possible trafficking cases in the
last month (ref C). Embassy point of contact on the
trafficking in persons (TIP) issue is Political Officer
Brad Evans, tel. +354-562-9100x2294, fax +354-562-9139,
unclassified e-mail EvansBR@state.gov. From February 20

SIPDIS
until April 1, point of contact is Economic Officer Fiona
Evans, tel. +354-562-9100x2295, fax +354-562-9139,
unclassified e-mail EvansFS@state.gov.

SIPDIS

Hours spent on preparation:
- Polofficer (FS 03) 20 hrs
- Econofficer (FS 03) 9 hrs
- Polassistant 61 hrs
- DCM 2 hrs
Total: 92 hrs

The following questions and answers correspond to the
format provided reftel.

2. (SBU) Overview of a country's activities to eliminate
trafficking in persons:

-- A. Is the country a country of origin, transit, or
destination for international trafficked men, women, or
children? Provide, where possible, numbers or estimates
for each group; how they were trafficked, to where, and for
what purpose. Does the trafficking occur within the
country's borders? Does it occur in territory outside of
the government's control (e.g. in a civil war situation)?
Are any estimates or reliable numbers available as to the
extent or magnitude of the problem? What is (are) the
source(s) of available information on trafficking in
persons or what plans are in place (if any) to undertake
documentation of trafficking? How reliable are the numbers
and these sources? Are certain groups of persons more at
risk of being trafficked (e.g. women and children, boys
versus girls, certain ethnic groups, refugees, etc.)?

There were no confirmed cases of trafficking in the
reporting period. There were a handful of alleged victims.
There were isolated cases of destination and theoretically
cases of origin as well. Putative cases fall into several
categories: undocumented Eastern European workers in
construction and manufacturing; 'mail-order' or 'Internet'
brides (both Eastern European and Asian) trapped with
abusive, controlling Icelandic husbands; and underpaid
and/or mistreated workers in nightclubs and massage
parlors.

The only information available on TIP is hearsay. Post's
sources ? especially NGOs ? maintain that TIP does exist in
Iceland. NGOs know of concrete examples of trafficking, yet
they cannot give an accurate estimate of how widespread TIP
is in Iceland. There are no plans to undertake
documentation of trafficking.

There is concern that undocumented foreign workers in
Iceland's booming construction sector may be exploited.
Most sources stress that the men willingly work illegally
in Iceland in order to make up to four times the normal
income in their Eastern-European/Baltic home countries and
opine that these are cases of immigrant and employment law
violations rather than trafficking in persons. The
'victims' enter the country on tourist visas or as Schengen
zone residents and proceed to work without obtaining work
permits. Judging by anecdotal evidence from press
accounts, such cases may number in the dozens, but no
Icelandic institution has undertaken a formal estimate.

The number of strip clubs in the Greater Reykjavik area
started decreasing in 2003 when changes in local
regulations to outlaw lap dances was enacted. In the past
year two erotic nightclubs have been opened in prominent
downtown Reykjavik locations, raising suspicions among
activists that prostitution and possibly trafficking could
be on the upswing again.

-- B. Please provide a general overview of the trafficking
situation in the country and any changes since the last TIP
Report (e.g. changes in direction). Also briefly explain
the political will to address trafficking in persons. Other

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items to address may include: What kind of conditions are
the victims trafficked into? Which populations are
targeted by the traffickers? Who are the traffickers?
What methods are used to approach victims? (Are they
offered lucrative jobs, sold by their families, approached
by friends of friends, etc.?) What methods are used to
move the victims (e.g., are false documents being used?).

As in previous years, suspected trafficking cases are
spoken of anecdotally rather than as part of a broader
trend of confirmed cases. TIP awareness had faded into the
background for a few years after tougher local regulations
were enacted to clamp down on strip clubs. On May 1, 2006
restrictions on the free flow of labor from the 10 new
EEA/EU countries were removed, allowing citizens of these
countries to enter Iceland and obtain residence permits
without first having a confirmed employment-based permit to
be in the country (as is the case for non-EEA/EU
nationals). The free flow of labor has facilitated the
entry of Eastern European and Baltic citizens, with a steep
rise in the number of people coming from these countries.
At the end of 2006 there were 18,327 foreign citizens with
legal residence in Iceland, or 6 percent of the total
population, but sources suggest that many foreign workers
go underreported. With this heavy inflow of labor, concerns
have been raised that it is likely more problematic to keep
track of possible instances of human trafficking than
before. In the reporting period the media paid attention
to less-than-ideal and often unsanitary housing for foreign
workers.

Political will: The government, most notably the Minister
of Justice, has declared its opposition to TIP and its
intent to combat the problem in the broader scheme of
efforts to deal with the threat of transnational crime
(including reorganization of police districts and increases
in intelligence and analytical units that could have an
impact on TIP -- see below). The Ministry of Justice has
designated its Head of Legal Affairs as the primary
government point of contact on TIP issues, and this
official enjoys good relations with the law enforcement and
NGO communities. That said, the government has not carried
out a formal survey of the problem and has no apparent
plans to do so. The government emphasizes the role that
its other efforts against transnational crime play in
combating TIP, but has thus far been reluctant to expend
assets in TIP-specific directions. Post believes this is
in some ways an understandable result of the small size of
most government institutions in the country (the entire
population of Iceland is roughly 300,000).

TIP has been raised in parliament on a handful of occasions
during the reporting period, though an opposition-sponsored
bill to increase protections and services for TIP victims
looks unlikely to pass in this legislative session.

In a recent case highlighting the broad anti-TIP consensus
here, a planned four-day-gathering of pornography industry
moguls in Reykjavik in March 2007 caused outrage among all
segments of Icelandic society, including NGOs, the national
government and the Reykjavik City Council. Minister of
Trade and Industry Jon Sigurdsson said of the conference:
"We have no assurances that this is not a case of modern
day slavery. People talk of human trafficking. I would
rather talk of it as slavery...it is intolerable." The
conference was cancelled three weeks prior to its start
when the hotel cancelled the reservations of the group and
the organizers could not find a new location on such short
notice.

-- C. What are the limitations on the government's ability
to address this problem in practice? For example, is
funding for police or other institutions inadequate? Is
overall corruption a problem? Does the government lack the
resources to aid victims?

Iceland consistently ranked in independent surveys as one
of the world's least corrupt societies. Funding for police
and other institutions that are on the TIP front lines is
adequate for a reactive approach but inadequate to fund
active measures to prevent potential new cases. These
efforts got a boost on January 1, 2007, with the launch of
an intelligence and analytical unit within the office of
the National Police Commissioner, intended to strengthen
proactive measures to combat international organized crime

REYKJAVIK 00000090 003 OF 011


that might expand into Iceland, including TIP. Also on
January 1, realignment of police districts in the greater
Reykjavik area came into effect with the hope that
consolidated resources will increase efficiency within
police districts and improve communication and response in
complex investigations, including prostitution and human
trafficking cases. Programs to provide emergency shelter
and crime victim compensation, which in theory could be
used to help TIP victims, have rarely been tested in the
trafficking context.

-- D. To what extent does the government systematically
monitor its anti-trafficking efforts (on all fronts --
prosecution, prevention and victim protection) and
periodically make available, publicly or privately and
directly or through regional/international organizations,
its assessments of these anti-trafficking efforts?

There is no systematic government monitoring of anti-
trafficking efforts as such ? i.e., none beyond ordinary
recordkeeping as to laws proposed and passed. Primary
responsibility for anti-trafficking work lies with the
Ministry of Justice, which oversees the police, courts, and
border control authorities. The MOJ's Director of Legal
Affairs serves as the primary TIP Point of Contact for the
government and has coordination responsibility within the
government (e.g., with the Ministries of Social Welfare and
Foreign Affairs on victim protection and international
obligations, respectively; and with other law enforcement
and judicial authorities under the authority of the MOJ)
and outside the government (e.g., with NGOs and activist
groups). This designation of the MOJ as lead government
agency on the issue was consolidated in the summer of 2006.
The MOJ has initiated an all-party TIP working group for
the purposes of coordination between state and non-
governmental actors as well as liaison with other Nordic
and Baltic countries on the issue. The working group is
discussing the means available for a systematic survey of
the TIP problem as well as anti-TIP efforts.

3. (SBU) PREVENTION:

-- A. Does the government acknowledge that trafficking is a
problem in that country? If no, why not?

Government officials acknowledge that Iceland, despite its
geographic isolation and privileged, homogeneous
population, is not wholly unique and thus probably has a
trafficking problem. They are, however, hard-pressed to
supply examples of specific cases and maintain that Iceland
does not suffer from the same TIP problem as other Nordic
and Baltic countries.

-- B. Which government agencies are involved in anti-trafficking
efforts and which agency, if any, has the lead?

The following agencies are involved in anti-trafficking efforts:
-- Ministry of Justice (including the Directorate of
Immigration, State Prosecutor's Office, and National
Commissioner of Police and local police forces -- including
as of January 1, 2007, the Sudurnes Police Commissioner
(formerly the Keflavik Airport Police Commissioner),
previously under the authority of the Ministry for Foreign
Affairs): lead agency. Ragna Arnadottir, Director of Legal
Affairs at the MOJ, is the national Point of Contact on TIP
issues.
-- Ministry for Foreign Affairs
-- Ministry of Social Affairs (including the Equal Rights Office and
Directorate of Labor)

-- C. Are there, or have there been, government-run anti-
trafficking information or education campaigns? If so,
briefly describe the campaign(s), including their
objectives and effectiveness. Do these campaigns target
potential trafficking victims and/or the demand for
trafficking (e.g. "clients" of prostitutes or beneficiaries
of forced labor).

There has been no Icelandic government public outreach or
information campaign on TIP in the reporting period. The
government has carried out information campaigns regarding
the change in labor laws to allow free movement of workers
from the new Eastern European and Baltic member states of
the EU. These campaigns (largely through print media and
posters/flyers in government offices such as the

REYKJAVIK 00000090 004 OF 011


Directorates of Immigration and Labor Affairs) targeted
both employers (to inform them of their responsibility to
request work permits for their immigrant employees) as well
as immigrant employees (to inform them of their rights and
obligations under Icelandic labor law, which are the same
as those of Icelandic citizens). These efforts were
supported by Iceland's major labor unions.

-- D. Does the government support other programs to prevent
trafficking? (e.g., to promote women's participation in
economic decision-making or efforts to keep children in
school.) Please explain.

There are no government trafficking-prevention programs as
such.

-- E. What is the relationship between government
officials, NGOs, other relevant organizations and other
elements of civil society on the trafficking issue?

NGO representatives complain that the government does not
invite their participation in the early stages of
legislative drafting and policy planning. Government
officials express the view that inviting civil society to
comment on fully-drawn proposals ought to be sufficient.
In spite of this tension, individual relationships within
the small circle of those who regularly work on this issue
are cordial and professional. A working group consisting
of representatives from NGOs and the government ? one from
sexual abuse crisis center "Stigamot," one from the
country's sole Women's Shelter, and the government's
national POC on trafficking issues (from the Ministry of
Justice) ? was established in January 2007. The group also
has associate members from other NGOs and government
agencies, including representatives from the Sudurnes
Police Commissioner's office whose jurisdiction includes
Keflavik International airport (Iceland's only
international airport). It will oversee and keep track of
what is being done to prevent and fight TIP in Iceland, by
guaranteeing the flow of information through direct
communications channels with institutions and NGOs. The
working group will also work on improving conditions, the
rehabilitation and repatriation of TIP victims if
necessary. The working group will report on its activities
to the European Women?s Lobby. The working group is also
planning to prepare a booklet with TIP information for
distribution at municipal social service centers.

-- F. Does the government monitor immigration and
emigration patterns for evidence of trafficking? Do law
enforcement agencies screen for potential trafficking
victims along borders?

The government monitors immigration and emigration patterns
for evidence of trafficking; and screens for potential
trafficking victims at Keflavik International Airport. The
country has no land borders.

-- G. Is there a mechanism for coordination and
communication between various agencies, internal,
international, and multilateral on trafficking-related
matters, such as a multi-agency working group or a task
force? Does the government have a trafficking in persons
working group or single point of contact? Does the
government have a public corruption task force?

There is no purely domestic anti-trafficking task force;
nor is there a public corruption task force. However,
government representatives on the anti-TIP working group
(see point E above) coordinate their activities in advance
of the working group meetings. The Ministry of Justice's
Director of Legal Affairs is the national Point of Contact
on TIP issues.

-- H. Does the government have a national plan of action to
address trafficking in persons? If so, which agencies were
involved in developing it? Were NGOs consulted in the
process? What steps has the government taken to
disseminate the action plan?

Iceland does not have a national plan of action to address
TIP. In 2003 the Minister of Justice and Minister of Social
Affairs, along with her Nordic counterparts, agreed to
prepare a national plan of action to address TIP before the
end of 2005. The government's plans have languished and

REYKJAVIK 00000090 005 OF 011


the delays have resulted in some criticism from the
opposition parties in parliament, most recently in January
2007. The current Minister of Justice has said that actions
speak louder than action plans, and that he feels that
current actions are adequate to meet the problem, pointing
to such actions as stepped-up police readiness to combat
international organized crime through increased allocations
to national police offices dealing with international
cooperation and intelligence analysis, as well as the
merging of police districts in the greater Reykjavik area
to pool resources for complex investigations such as TIP.
As a result, the capital area police now have their first
multi-officer investigative unit devoted to sexual abuse
and prostitution cases, a mandate which also includes cases
of trafficking for sexual exploitation.

4. INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION OF TRAFFICKERS:

-- A. Does the country have a law specifically prohibiting
trafficking in persons--both for sexual and non-sexual
purposes (e.g. forced labor)? If so, please specifically
cite the name of the law and its date of enactment? Does
the law(s) cover both internal and external (transnational)
forms of trafficking? If not, under what other laws can
traffickers be prosecuted? For example, are there laws
against slavery or the exploitation of prostitution by
means of force, fraud or coercion? Are these other laws
being used in trafficking cases? Are these laws, taken
together, adequate to cover the full scope of trafficking
in persons? Please provide a full inventory of trafficking
laws, including civil penalties against alleged trafficking
crimes, (e.g., civil forfeiture laws and laws against
illegal debt).

Passed into law March 10, 2003, Article 227a of Iceland?s
General Penal Code outlaws trafficking in persons. The
government has not yet brought any prosecutions under it,
choosing instead to use General Penal Code Articles 57 and
155, which outlaw alien smuggling and document forgery,
respectively.

-- B. What are the penalties for trafficking people for
sexual exploitation?

Trafficking of persons for sexual exploitation is
punishable by up to eight years in prison.

-- C. Punishment of Labor Trafficking Offenses: What are
the prescribed and imposed penalties for trafficking for
labor exploitation, such as forced or bonded labor and
involuntary servitude? Do the government's laws provide
for criminal punishment -- i.e. jail time -- for labor
recruiters in labor source countries who engage in
recruitment of laborers using knowingly fraudulent or
deceptive offers that result in workers being exploited in
the destination country? For employers or labor agents in
labor destination countries who confiscate workers'
passports or travel documents, switch contracts without the
worker's consent as a means to keep the worker in a state
of service, or withhold payment of salaries as means of
keeping the worker in a state of service? If law(s)
prescribe criminal punishments for these offenses, what are
the actual punishments imposed on persons convicted of
these offenses?

Trafficking of persons for forced labor is punishable by up
to eight years in prison. The laws provide for criminal
punishment for anyone who procures, removes, houses or
accepts someone who has been subjected to unlawful
restraint, deprived of freedom, threat, or unlawful
deception by awakening, strengthening or utilizing his/her
lack of understanding of the person concerned about
circumstances or other inappropriate method. The same
penalty shall be applied to a person accepting payment or
other gain.

-- D. What are the prescribed penalties for rape or
forcible sexual assault? How do they compare to the
prescribed and imposed penalties for crimes of trafficking
for commercial sexual exploitation?

Rape is punishable by up to 16 years in prison, but even
especially brutal rapes rarely draw sentences of more than
six years, with one or two years' imprisonment more common.
As there have been no prosecutions for sex trafficking in

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Iceland it is impossible to compare actual penalties.

-- E. Is prostitution legalized or decriminalized?
Specifically, are the activities of the prostitute
criminalized? Are the activities of the brothel
owner/operator, clients, pimps, and enforcers criminalized?
Are these laws enforced? If prostitution is legal and
regulated, what is the legal minimum age for this activity?
Note that in many countries with federalist systems,
prostitution laws may be covered by state, local, and
provincial authorities.

On March 17, parliament passed a bill that decriminalizes
prostitution as a main source of income, but bans its
advertisement. Previously it was only permissible for
individuals to engage in isolated sales of sex as long as
both parties were at least 18 years old, and it was not a
main source of income. The government argues that most
people who solicit sex do so because they have no other
choice or because they are forced into prostitution by
others. By making the solicitation of sex legal the
government believes individuals who have been forced into
prostitution would rather come forward and lead police to
those responsible. The activities of clients are not
criminalized. It is illegal for any third party to earn
his or her income from someone?s prostitution, e.g. by
pimping or renting out premises. It is also illegal to
tempt, encourage, or assist a child under the age of 18 to
engage in prostitution; and to promote the emigration or
immigration of an individual for the purpose of his or her
engaging in prostitution for a living.

The opposition Left Green party has for several years
introduced a bill in the Althingi to criminalize the
activities of clients, as in Sweden, but the government has
repeatedly blocked the bill's passage on the ground that
Iceland does not confront the level of street prostitution
seen in its Nordic neighbors.

-- F. Has the government prosecuted any cases against
traffickers? If so, provide numbers of investigations,
prosecutions, convictions, and sentences, including details
on plea bargains and fines, if relevant and available.
Does the government in a labor source country criminally
prosecute labor recruiters who recruit laborers using
knowingly fraudulent or deceptive offers or impose on
recruited laborers inappropriately high or illegal fees or
commissions that create a debt bondage condition for the
laborer? Does the government in a labor destination
country criminally prosecute employers or labor agents who
confiscate workers' passports/travel documents, switch
contracts or terms of employment without the worker's
consent, use physical or sexual abuse or the threat of such
abuse to keep workers in a state of service, or withhold
payment of salaries as a means to keep workers in a state
of service? Are the traffickers serving the time
sentenced: If no, why not? Please indicate whether the
government can provide this information, and if not, why
not? (Note: complete answers to this section are
essential. End Note)

The Government has not prosecuted any cases against
traffickers. In the one case (dating from 2005) wherein a
massage parlor owner was convicted of exploiting a Chinese
national employee in a way that could have been construed
as human trafficking, the defendant was convicted of
document forgery and required to pay damages to the victim.

-- G. Is there any information or reports of who is behind
the trafficking? For example, are the traffickers
freelance operators, small crime groups, and/or large
international organized crime syndicates? Are employment,
travel, and tourism agencies or marriage brokers fronting
for traffickers or crime groups to traffic individuals?
Are government officials involved? Are there any reports
of where profits from trafficking in persons are being
channeled? (e.g. armed groups, terrorist organizations,
judges, banks, etc.)

The Ministry of Justice and police say they have no data on
who is behind any alleged trafficking beyond individual
business owners who themselves stand to profit. Due to the
size and low visibility of the problem, Post is unable to
obtain further information to determine whether there are
notable trends in this regard.

REYKJAVIK 00000090 007 OF 011

-- H. Does the government actively investigate cases of
trafficking? (Again, the focus should be on trafficking
cases versus migrant smuggling cases.) Does the government
use active investigative techniques in trafficking in
persons investigations? To the extent possible under
domestic law, are techniques such as electronic
surveillance, undercover operations, and mitigated
punishment or immunity for cooperating suspects used by the
government? Does the criminal procedure code or other laws
prohibit the police from engaging in covert operations?

Police are not permitted to engage in covert operations,
but the government does use other active investigative
techniques, including electronic surveillance. The law
does not provide for immunity for cooperating suspects, but
in practice deals do get made. In general, opportunities
for mitigated punishment are de facto available, but there
is no precedent to evaluate their use in trafficking cases.

-- I. Does the government provide any specialized training
for government officials in how to recognize, investigate,
and prosecute instances of trafficking?

Students from the Icelandic National Police College
annually participate in classes held by the Sudurnes Police
Commissioner and Customs that include instruction on
recognizing and investigating human trafficking issues.
Senior Sudurnes/Keflavik officials have themselves been
funded by the government to attend trafficking courses
abroad, e.g. at the European Police Academy.

--J. Does the government cooperate with other governments
in the investigation and prosecution of trafficking cases?
If possible, can post provide the number of cooperative
international investigations on trafficking?

No such cooperation took place in the reporting period, but
experience with other types of international crime,
including alien and drug smuggling, suggests that such
cooperation would be forthcoming if requested.

In September, three Polish women who had been prostituting
themselves in Reykjavik were deported to Poland after they
were arrested. Once in Poland, Polish and Icelandic police
authorities did not exchange information or otherwise
cooperate on the case, which may have been a case of human
trafficking. Please see 5D for further discussion on this
case.

-- K. Does the government extradite persons who are charged
with trafficking in other countries? If so, can post
provide the number of traffickers extradited? Does the
government extradite its own nationals charged with such
offenses? If not, is the government prohibited by law
form extraditing its own nationals? If so, what is the
government doing to modify its laws to permit the
extradition of its own nationals?

Iceland has not been asked to extradite a trafficking
suspect to another country. Icelandic law does not permit
extradition of Icelandic nationals, and no changes to the
law are currently planned.

-- L. Is there evidence of government involvement in or
tolerance of trafficking, on a local or institutional
level? If so, please explain in detail.

No; not applicable.

-- M. If government officials are involved in trafficking,
what steps has the government taken to end such
participation? Have any government officials been
prosecuted for involvement in trafficking or trafficking-
related corruption? Have any been convicted? What
sentence(s) was imposed? Please provide specific numbers,
if available.

There is no evidence of government officials being involved
in trafficking, and no government officials have ever been
prosecuted or convicted for such activity.

-- N. If the country has an identified child sex tourism
problem (as source or destination), how many foreign
pedophiles has the government prosecuted or

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deported/extradited to their country of origin? What are
the countries of origin for sex tourists? Do the country's
child sexual abuse laws have extraterritorial coverage
(like the U.S. PROTECT Act)? If so, how many of the
country's nationals have been prosecuted and/or convicted
under the extraterritorial provision(s)?

Not applicable.

-- O. Has the government signed, ratified, and/or taken
steps to implement the following international instruments?
Please provide the date of signature/ratification if
appropriate.

--ILO Convention 182 concerning the Prohibition and
Immediate Action for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of
Child Labor.

Ratified 5/29/2000.

--ILO Convention 29 and 105 on Forced or Compulsory Labor.

Convention 29 ratified 2/17/1958; Convention 105 ratified 11/29/1960.

--The Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the
Child (CRC) on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution, and Child
Pornography.

Ratified 7/9/2001.

--The Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish
Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children,
supplementing the UN Convention Against Transnational
Organized Crime.

Signed 12/13/2000. The Protocol is presently under review
at the Ministry of Justice (along with the Council of
Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human
Beings, which Iceland signed on May 16, 2005) to examine
the need for further changes to Icelandic law once the two
agreements are ratified. According to the MOJ's POC for
trafficking issues, the Protocol, COE Convention, and any
further legal changes will be cleared through the Icelandic
interagency process and prepared in time to be submitted to
the Althingi (parliament) during its next session starting
October 2007.

5. PROTECTION AND ASSISTANCE TO VICTIMS:

-- A. Does the government assist victims, for example, by
providing temporary to permanent residency status, relief
from deportation, shelter and access to legal, medical and
psychological services? If so, please explain. Does the
country have victim care and victim health care facilities?
Does the country have facilities dedicated to helping
victims of trafficking? If so, can post provide the number
of victims placed in these care facilities?

There is no de jure provision for government assistance to
TIP victims. In theory, municipal social services and
medical care are available to victims as to other citizens
and, thanks to reimbursements to municipalities from the
Ministry of Social Affairs, foreigners. In cases involving
unaccompanied children, municipal and state child
protection services are responsible for assistance. The
national and local governments may also refer to NGOs that
provide food, shelter, legal advice, and health care. While
there is also no de jure provision for grants of residence
to TIP victims, in practice the Immigration Authority has
used its discretion to offer permits to foreign women
escaping abusive, exploitative marriages. In January 2007
a Nigerian woman was granted a residence permit on
humanitarian grounds due to domestic abuse from her
Icelandic husband. This was the first case of its kind,
and while applauded by activists, the government's ad hoc
decision was also criticized for not setting any clear
framework for future similar cases.

Neither government nor Embassy sources could identify any
TIP victims assisted during the reporting period.

An opposition-sponsored bill to institutionalize
protections for TIP victims was introduced in December 2006
but was not passed. Government officials have indicated
that the law's provisions are unnecessary given the low

REYKJAVIK 00000090 009 OF 011


number of alleged TIP victims and the fact that services
can be made available to such individuals even without the
law's passage.

-- B. Does the government provide funding or other forms of
support to foreign or domestic NGOs for services to
victims? Please explain.

The primary NGOs that provide services to victims of what
may be trafficking receive considerable financial
assistance from the government. The 2007 state budget
allocates IKR 32.5 million (US $464,300) to the Women?s
Shelter and IKR 31.5 million (US $450,000) to the Icelandic
Counseling and Information Center for Survivors of Sexual
Violence (Stigamot). Other NGOs have varying allocations
from the state budget. One of those is the Women?s Advice
Center, a legal clinic that will receive IKR 800,000 (US $
11,400) in 2007. These funds are not specially earmarked
for services to TIP victims. The government does not
provide funding to foreign NGOs for services to victims.

-- C. Do the government's law enforcement and social
services personnel have a formal system of identifying
victims of trafficking among high-risk persons with whom
they come in contact (e.g. foreign persons arrested for
prostitution or immigration violations)? Is there a
referral process in place, when appropriate, to transfer
victims detained, arrested or placed in protective custody
by law enforcement authorities to NGOs that provide short-
or long-term care?

Again it is unclear that there are any victims of
trafficking per se, but the Icelandic Red Cross has in the
past assisted persons alleged to have been smuggled. Such
individuals have been housed in hostels and guesthouses in
advance of their deportation. The government-sponsored TIP
working group that includes government and NGO
representatives has helped to further open lines of
communication between these groups. NGOs that provide
services that might be of use to TIP victims (e.g., the
sexual abuse crisis center, the women's shelter) report
that referrals and communication by police in possible
cases of interest is generally improving.

However, in one case that received media attention in
September 2006, three Polish women were deported to their
home country after police suspected them of prostitution.
Public comments by police officials indicated that the
women denied being TIP victims, while NGO representatives
have complained that the women were not given access to
social workers or counselors to determine whether or not
they had been victims of abuse. Police officials say they
informed the three women of the availability of various
social services, but the women did not want to take
advantage of those services.

-- D. Are the rights of victims respected, or are victims
treated as criminals? Are victims detained, jailed, or
deported? If detained or jailed, for how long? Are
victims fined? Are victims prosecuted for violations of
other laws, such as those governing immigration or
prostitution?

While there were no identified trafficking victims in the
reporting period, possible trafficking victims have been
prosecuted under laws governing immigration. Typically
they have been detained and jailed for from 30 to 45 days
in advance of deportation. The Keflavik Police
Commissioner (currently the Sudurnes Police Commissioner)
reported to post in 2006 that some have been offered
residence in Iceland on compassionate grounds, but in every
instance they have turned down the offer -- he believes
because they are desperate to return to their countries of
origin to arrange repayment of their traffickers in order
to avoid violent retaliation against themselves and their
families. However, he was not able to offer further
evidence to support this speculation, and did not point to
specific facts elicited during interviews with such
individuals to support the claim. The same office reported
no cases that aroused strong interest during this most
recent reporting period.

In the case of the three Polish women noted above, the
women were in Iceland for less than two weeks while
Reykjavik city police investigated their case. They were

REYKJAVIK 00000090 010 OF 011


deported shortly after they were arrested and denied being
victims of trafficking. According to information obtained
from Embassy Warsaw, Polish police authorities received
information about this case but did not investigate it.
They were simply notified that Icelandic police had been
working on a trafficking case. Icelandic police
authorities did not contact the Polish police directly and
did not ask for any support or cooperation.

In March, two Brazilian women--one of which was arrested?-
were questioned in relation to having solicited sex in
Reykjavik hotels for several weeks. At least one of the
women was then deported. An Icelandic man was briefly
arrested, suspected of having forced the two women into
prostitution. The investigation was still underway when
this report was submitted, and police authorities did not
rule out the possibility of TIP.

-- E. Does the government encourage victims to assist in
the investigation and prosecution of trafficking? May
victims file civil suits or seek legal action against the
traffickers? Does anyone impede the victims' access to
such legal redress? If a victim is a material witness in a
court case against a former employer, is the victim
permitted to obtain other employment or to leave the
country pending trial proceedings? Is there a victim
restitution program?

The government encourages victims to assist in the
investigation and prosecution of trafficking. Victims may
file civil suits or seek legal action against the
traffickers. No one impedes victims' access to such legal
redress. There is no specific provision in the law to
permit a material witness in a court case against a former
employer to obtain other employment or leave the country;
however, the government has adequate discretion to make
such accommodations. There is no specific restitution
program for victims for trafficking in persons, but there
is one for victims of violence.

-- F. What kind of protection is the government able to
provide for victims and witnesses? Does it provide these
protections in practice? What type of shelter or services
does the government provide? Does it provide shelter or any
housing benefits to victims or other resources to aid the
victims in rebuilding their lives? Where are child victims
placed (e.g. in shelters, foster-care, or juvenile justice
detention centers)?

Please see section 5A, above.

-- G. Does the government provide any specialized training
for government officials in recognizing trafficking and in
the provision of assistance to trafficked victims,
including the special needs of trafficked children? Does
the government provide training on protections and
assistance to its embassies and consulates in foreign
countries that are destination or transit countries? Does
it urge those embassies and consulates to develop ongoing
relationships with NGOs that serve trafficked victims?

The answer to each of these questions is no. That said,
the Nordic Baltic Task Force against Trafficking in Human
Beings, of which Iceland is a member, intends to deepen the
cooperation between Nordic and Baltic embassies in order to
increase efforts to assist victims of trafficking and
eradicate TIP. The Task Force also encourages the
governments of the Nordic and Baltic states to develop
networks that facilitate the exchange of information on
trafficking trends and to educate the diplomatic corps
working in countries of destination.

-- H. Does the government provide assistance, such as
medical aid, shelter, or financial help, to its repatriated
nationals who are victims of trafficking?

There have been no such cases identified in the reporting
period. While repatriated nationals would benefit from the
same social safety net as any other Icelander, there are no
programs specifically for victims of trafficking.

-- I. Which international organizations or NGOs, if any,
work with trafficking victims? What type of services do
they provide? What sort of cooperation do they receive
from local authorities? NOTE: If post reports that a

REYKJAVIK 00000090 011 OF 011


government is incapable of assisting and protecting TIP
victims, then post should explain thoroughly. Funding,
personnel, and training constraints should be noted, if
applicable. Conversely, the lack of political will to
address the problem should be noted as well.

Please see 5A and 5B above for descriptions of
government/NGO coordination on support to potential victims
of trafficking.

VAN VOORST

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