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OSCE Mission to Montenegro supports border police officers in fighting human trafficking

Effective border control is a key element in the fight against international organized crime, including human trafficking, which is why the OSCE Mission to Montenegro from 25 to 29 March organized two training sessions in Budva in Kolašin for border police officers from across the country on how to interview a victim of human trafficking.

A total of 43 participants discussed how to conduct interviews with victims of trafficking, using gender-sensitive approach and guidelines developed with Mission’s support using a standardized set of questions. The training sessions strengthened the capacities of police border officers to identify through interviewing victims of human trafficking, providing legal protection and avoiding secondary victimization.

Tijana Šuković, Head of the Department for Combating Human Trafficking in the Ministry of Interior, stated that effective border control is a key condition for efficient police action and the safety of all citizens. “In 2023, the team for the formal identification of victims of human trafficking identified a total of 18 persons as victims of human trafficking. The forms of exploitation to which these persons were exposed included both labour and sexual exploitation, forced begging, illegal marriage, use for pornographic purposes,” said Šuković. She explained that the largest percentage of victims were women and female minors, coming from marginalized environments characterized by poor education, discrimination, poverty, and the constant presence of various types of violence.

These training sessions have been implemented for the third year in a row. In previous years, 108 police officers were trained through eight sessions. Mission’s continuous support is part of the efforts to assist Montenegro in implementing the national Strategy for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings 2019–2024.