The 2018 International Workshop on Strategies for Combating Human Trafficking is launching today, inviting scholars, NGO members, and government officials from around the world to participate in discussion about cracking down on crime through regional and international cooperation. Four blue-core crystal balls, standing for the four Ps prevention strategies of human trafficking (Prevention, Protection, Prosecution, and Partnership), were activated by Vice President Chen Chien-jen, Minister of the Interior Hsu Kuo-yung, AIT Acting Director Raymond Greene, President of the Global Migration Policy Associates Patrick Taran, and legislators Wu Yu-qing and Lee Li-feng as a symbol of global cooperation and constantly striving for excellence.In his opening remarks, Vice President Chen mentioned that the Cabinet-level Anti-TIP Task Force, established by President Tsai in 2007, had been integrating resources for the past 12 years. He said that through governmental cooperation, Taiwan has achieved a tier 1 rating last month in the Trafficking in Persons Report by the US Department of State for accomplishments in preventing human trafficking, an acknowledgement of our protection of human rights.Chen said that international and regional cooperation are essential for combating human trafficking. Taiwan has signed cooperation agreements and MOUs with 17 countries, and one European country will soon sign a MOU on immigration affairs and the prevention of human trafficking with Taiwan this year. This is an example of Taiwan’s active participation in international affairs, and proof that Taiwan is an important partner of the international community.Hsu Kuo-yung, Minister of the Interior said that the earth is flat. Human migration caused by globalization often causes crime, and cultural variation and differences in laboring conditions can make people socially vulnerable. These factors result in human trafficking becoming the third most prominent crime, after arms and drugs. Hsu said we should not take too much pride in being rated tier 1 for nine consecutive years, and must continue to improve the laboring rights of fishing and domestic workers. We must also continue with our protection of human rights, build stronger partnerships with the international community, and sign more cooperation agreements and MOUs with other countries.Minister without Portfolio Luo Bing-Cheng remarked that human right is an indicator of a culturally advanced society, and Taiwan regularly holds National Human Rights Reports. As part of the 4th P – Partnership, Taiwan engages in dialogue with the international community. Taiwan will always cooperate with the international community to protect human dignity.AIT Acting Director Raymond Greene said that the first thing he did after assuming office last month was to congratulate Taiwan for the tier 1 rating. This is evidence of the solid effort Taiwan put into prevention, as only 6 countries in the Asia-Pacific region received a tier 1 rating, and Taiwan’s accomplishment of 9 consecutive tier 1s is one unique accomplishment.The 2018 International Workshop on Strategies for Combating Human Trafficking invites experts and scholars from the US, UK, Belgium, New Zealand, Japan, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Hong Kong. Also invited are officials from Southeast Asian countries that have signed MOUs with Taiwan. Photos were taken as Vice President Chen, scholars, NGO members, foreign representatives, and guests posed with one hand clenched in a fist and the other holding a blue core, a declaration of global dedication to combating human trafficking.According to the Ministry of the Interior, the 2-day 2018 International Workshop on Strategies for Combating Human Trafficking is in response to the advice provided in the Trafficking in Persons Report 2018, and the United Nation’s World Day against Trafficking in Persons on 30 July. The Workshop will discuss topics such as Joint International Prevention and Regional Prevention Mechanisms, The Competing Claims over Criminality and Penal Actions in Human Trafficking Cases, Effective Mechanisms for Preventing Labor Exploitation of the Vulnerable, and Victim Protection Mechanisms. Experts and scholars from Taiwan and overseas will present and discuss these topics.About 300 representatives from AIT Taipei, Global Migration Policy Associates, the National Anti-Narcotics Agency of Indonesia, the University of Auckland, the University of the Philippines National College of Public Administration and Governance, the Specialist Crime & Operations of the London Metropolitan Police Service, Freedom Network USA, Payoke, The Justice Centre Hong Kong, and the Japanese NGO Lighthouse attended the Workshop. Through exchanging experiences in the seminars, we will help other countries understand Taiwan’s efforts and achievements in preventing human trafficking, provide an example for Asian countries, and improve our prevention strategies and perceptions.The Ministry of the Interior emphasizes that Partnership is a key part of our 4P strategy. The International Workshop on Strategies for Combating Human Trafficking is an important platform for international cooperation and exchanges, and we will continue to invite government officials and members of international NGOs to participate. We hope to learn from the experiences from other countries, and obtain the latest information on the prevention of human trafficking. We will cooperate with NGOs and enhance cooperation with international partners so as to better protect human rights.The 2018 International Workshop on Strategies for Combating Human Trafficking will be held today in the Visionary Hall on the 1st floor of the Civil Service Development Institute. The agenda will be continued on tomorrow.