Plans are afoot to establish a committee that would fight human trafficking in Qatar. The Cabinet yesterday approved a proposal from the labor ministry to set up the body.
It would be tasked with creating a national plan to counter human trafficking and preparing annual reports on Qatar’s efforts, QNA stated.
Over the summer, Qatar’s failure to do enough to tackle the trafficking of people kept it on the US government’s watch-list for a third year.
The latest edition of the US State Department’s 2016 Trafficking in Person’s Report said that Qatar was making “significant efforts” to tackle the problem, but much more needed to be done.
It described trafficking as “the act of recruiting, harboring, transporting, providing, or obtaining a person for compelled labor or commercial sex acts through the use of force, fraud, or coercion.”
The report called for more prosecutions under the nation’s anti-trafficking law (No. 15 of 2011), which carries jail terms of up to seven years and maximum fines of QR230,000 for those found guilty.
Qatar said that last year, 11 people were prosecuted and convicted under the law for the first time.
The US also urged the nation to:
- Better enforce the law against sponsors who withhold workers’ passports;
- Require all companies to provide Residency Permits for their employees within one week of arriving in Qatar; and
- Bring domestic workers under the labor law.