Cablegate: 2003 Trafficking in Persons Report for Mozambique
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 MAPUTO 000284
STATE FOR G/TIP; G; DRL; PRM; IWI; AF/RSA
DEPT PASS TO USAID
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ASEC ELAB KCRM KFRD KWMN PHUM PREF SMIG MZ
SUBJECT: 2003 TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS REPORT FOR MOZAMBIQUE
REF: STATE 007869
1. (SBU) OVERVIEW.
A- Mozambique is a country of origin for internationally
trafficked women and children. Trafficking is also believed
to occur within the country. There are no reliable numbers
available on the extent of the problem. Poverty, a history of
child migration, cultural/religious practices, and weak
border controls are all factors contributing to trafficking.
Local NGOs and international organizations such as IOM, Terre
des Hommes, and UNICEF are the principal sources of
information on trafficking. Children, both boys and girls,
and women are the principal victims of trafficking. During
2003, there was increased attention in the local press and
among government officials to the problem of trafficking in
persons in Mozambique. Several reports, including a May 2003
study by the International Organization on Migration (IOM) on
trafficking in women and children for sexual exploitation in
Southern Africa and a South African Broadcasting Corporation
(SABC) program "Special Assignment" provided important
documentary evidence of specific cases of trafficking in
Mozambique. Allegations of trafficking appeared regularly in
the Mozambican press. In early 2004, the Attorney General's
office undertook an investigation in northern Mozambique
(Nampula) over allegations of trafficking in human body parts
and child disappearances. A preliminary report released in
February found no evidence of organ trafficking. During his
New Year's address, President Chissano referred to reports of
alleged cases of trafficking in children.
B- Research by both IOM and Terre des Hommes indicate that
South Africa is the principal receiving country for
trafficked persons from Mozambique. Victims come from all
regions of the country and internal migration is common.
C- Until recently, allegations of trafficking were most
pronounced in the southern region of Mozambique. However,
during 2003, there were allegations of trafficking in the
central province of Manica and the northern province of
Nampula. The case under investigation by the Attorney
General's office in Nampula focused on allegations against a
foreign couple by a locally-resident Brazilian nun. The
initial allegations may have been motivated by a dispute over
land; no evidence has been found to substantiate the
allegations against the foreign couple.
D- Several studies, including the report prepared in May 2003
by IOM, and various studies by NGOs were conducted during the
year. These studies have provided important documentary and
anecdotal evidence of trafficking activities. According to
the IOM study, approximately 1,000 Mozambican women and
children are trafficked to South Africa every year. To date,
there has not been a broad survey of trafficking and official
statistics on trafficking do not exist. Mozambican NGOs
working on trafficking in persons are planning a meeting for
early 2004 to coordinate efforts on this issue.
E- Not applicable.
F- Populations targeted include children from the northern
and central part of Mozambique and women and girls from the
southern part of the country. Victims may work as both sex
workers and non-sex workers. Victims are often promised
better jobs in South Africa. Once there, they are threatened
with their legal status and forced to work for little or no
pay. Local NGOs have also reported that children have been
targeted for the sale of their organs for use in religious or
traditional practices. According to the IOM report,
Mozambican women are also sold to brothels in South Africa or
as concubines or "wives" to mine workers. Recruitment may be
either passive or aggressive and victims may know their
G- Political will appears to exist and trafficking is
acknowledged as a problem at the highest levels of the
government. As noted above, President Chissano has expressed
his concern over reports of alleged cases of trafficking in
children. Another important indication of the government's
acknowledgment of the problem was the Attorney General's
investigation into allegations of trafficking in Nampula
earlier this year. The government has continued to
participate in the multi-sectoral Campaign against
Trafficking in Children. In September, the government in
conjunction with several NGOs launched a program to enhance
children protection laws, including the development of
legislation covering trafficking in children.
H- There is no evidence that government authorities actively
facilitate or condone trafficking. However, corruption is a
problem among police and customs officials and NGOs believe
that customs officials are likely to be bribed by
traffickers. No government officials have been accused,
investigated, etc. of trafficking.
I - Limited financial and technical resources and weak
institutions, including the police and judiciary, are
constraints to the government's ability to address
trafficking. Corruption among police and immigration
officials is a problem due to underfunding and lack of
professionalism. In addition, there is limited research and
statistical information on trafficking. Mozambique is heavily
dependent on the international donor community for budget
support and does not have its own funds to combat trafficking.
J- There are no publicly released assessments by the
government of anti-trafficking efforts. However, the GRM is
part of SARPCO, a forum for cooperation between police forces
in the region. Trafficking in persons is addressed
regionally through this forum. NGOs actively monitor and
report on government efforts.
K - Prostitution is illegal in Mozambique. However,
activities of prostitutes, brothel owners, clients, and pimps
are not criminalized. There are reports that police harass
and abuse prostitutes, principally to extort money.
L - Not applicable.
2. (SBU) PREVENTION.
A- The government acknowledges that trafficking is a problem.
See above (parts A and C).
B- Principal ministries/agencies involved in anti-trafficking
efforts are the Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of
Justice, Ministry of Women and Social Action Coordination and
the Attorney General's Office. All participate in the
Campaign against Trafficking in Children.
C- The Campaign against Trafficking in Children consists of
NGOs, international organizations, and government
representatives. Since the kickoff in 2001, it has conducted
activities such as public awareness, training of journalists,
workshops for children, and training of police officers. The
press actively reports on trafficking issues, both in general
and related to trafficking in organs. The government has
actively responded to allegations in the press through
investigations and public statements. One recent example was
the investigation by the Attorney General's office in
D- The government has a number of programs aimed at
supporting the position of women and children in Mozambican
society that are coordinated through the Ministry of Women
and Social Action Coordination, though these programs
generally do not focus on anti-trafficking. Programs
implemented through the Campaign are often focused on
vulnerable groups such as women and children.
E - The government's ability to support prevention programs
is limited due to a lack of financial and technical resources.
F - Coordination and information sharing among government,
NGOs and international organizations could be improved. A
representative from the local NGO FECIV is currently seconded
to the Ministry of the Interior to work on trafficking
G- Border controls remain weak and inadequate. There is no
formal monitoring of borders for evidence of trafficking and
illegal migration from Mozambique to South Africa has
historically been a problem.
H- There is a mechanism for coordination and communications
between various government agencies on drug trafficking. The
government does not have a formal task force on trafficking
in persons, though there is an ad hoc inter-ministerial
I- The government works with INTERPOL on criminal matters,
though there have been no specific cases on trafficking from
Mozambique addressed through this mechanism to date.
J - The government does not have a national plan of action on
trafficking, though inter-ministerial groups do exist and
they are involved in the Campaign against Trafficking in
K- Several ministries are involved in anti-trafficking
programs, including the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of
Justice, and the Ministry of Women and Social Action
3. (SBU) INVESTIGATIONS/PROSECUTION OF TRAFFICKERS.
A- Specific anti-trafficking legislation does not currently
exist. The Ministry of Justice, in conjunction with the
Ministry of Women and Social Action Coordination and civil
society are in the process of developing new legislation on
child protection, including anti-trafficking legislation for
children. Depending on the case, traffickers can be
prosecuted using laws on sexual assault, rape, abduction, and
B- Not applicable.
C- Penalties for rape or sexual assault range from 8-12
D- The government has not prosecuted any cases against
traffickers due to the lack of a trafficking law. As noted
above, traffickers can be prosecuted under other laws. In
2003, two individuals were detained in Manica province
following evidence of trafficking for the purported sale of
human organs. These individuals were charged with mutilation
of a minor and are currently awaiting trial.
E - NGOs and anecdotal evidence suggest that traffickers
represent diverse groups ranging from child trafficking
syndicates to individuals who may also be involved in migrant
smuggling. Traffickers include Chinese, Russian, Mozambican
and South African citizens. It is reported that employment
agencies are fronting for traffickers in the south of the
F - The government is increasingly investigating cases of
trafficking. Recently, the Attorney General's office
investigated a case of alleged trafficking in organs and
child disappearances in Nampula. As noted above, this case
initially targeted a foreign couple; no evidence was found
that linked the couple to trafficking activities. The
government has had difficulty investigating trafficking cases
due to lack of knowledge about trafficking, as well as a lack
of investigative capacity, including trained police officers
and adequate investigatory equipment.
G - Training for police officers has been conducted by NGOs.
Pilot police stations have been established in 3 provincial
capitals with special officers who have been trained on
dealing with victims of trafficking.
H - The Government cooperates through SARPCO on various types
of crime, but details on specific investigations are
I- The government can extradite persons who are charged with
trafficking in other countries. No extradition requests
related to trafficking have been requested to date. The law
does not specifically refer to the extradition of its own
K - There has been no evidence of government officials being
involved in trafficking.
L - The government ratified ILO Conventions 182 and 29 in
July 2003. Mozambique has not signed nor ratified the
Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the
Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution, and Child
Pornography, nor the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and
Punish Trafficking in Persons.
4. (SBU) PROTECTION/ASSISTANCE TO VICTIMS:
A - The Ministry of Women and Social Action Coordination
staffs hospitals in all provinces to deal with victims of
trafficking. Personnel provide short-term assistance to the
victims, but many in the provinces do not have adequate
funding to provide more long-term assistance, such as
housing. 3 pilot police stations in Pemba, Nampula, and
Lichinga recently were established to train police to deal
specifically with child victims of trafficking. There are no
statistics on victims served at such facilities.
B - The government does not provide funding to NGOs. Most
NGOs received funding from international donors.
C - There is no such process in Mozambique yet.
D - There has been no evidence that victims of trafficking in
Mozambique have been mistreated by authorities.
E - Victims may file civil suits and seek legal action
against traffickers. However, victims generally lack adequate
funds and/or are intimated about taking legal action.
F - Government is limited in its ability to provide
protection to victims and witnesses in any criminal case.
G - Most training for police officers has come from NGOs, not
the government. Personnel working for the Ministry of Women
and Social Action Coordination have limited training on
dealing with victims of trafficking. The government does not
provide training to its embassies/consulates on trafficking.
H - The government, through the Ministry of Women and Social
Action Coordination, provides short-term support for
trafficking victims, but is unable to provide much due to
lack of funding. As noted above, several police stations have
developed special units to deal with child victims of
trafficking. Severely limited resources is the principal
constraint in providing expanded assistance.
I - The Campaign against Trafficking in Children is in the
process of establishing a victim assistance center at the
border post of Ressano Garcia for repatriated child victims
5. (U) Post point of contact for G/TIP is Elizabeth Jaffee,
Telephone: (258) 1 492797
Fax: (258) 1 490114
6. (U) Econ/Poloff spent approximately 14 hours preparing