Thai government responds to TIP report

By

Sean Murphy, SeafoodSource online editor

Published on
July 28, 2015

The Thai government has issued a statement on the U.S. State Department’s Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report, released Monday, saying it is not a fair representation of the country’s efforts to fight forced labor.

The report gave Thailand the designation of Tier 3, the worst ranking possible, for the second year in a row, accusing the government of not taking enough action to prevent human slavery in multiple industries, including the seafood industry there.

“Thailand takes note of such an evaluation but believes that the placement of Thailand in Tier 3 does not accurately reflect the significant efforts undertaken by the government and its partnership with private sector and civil society in making the tangible progress that has occurred on all fronts in the previous year,” the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

The ministry described many efforts the government has made since the release of the 2014 TIP in June 2014, including new administrative committees to study the problem and arrests of what the ministry called “high-ranking officials complicit in human trafficking.”

The ministry also mentioned “expedited” registration of and legal protection for more than 1.6 million illegal immigrants, the core target of brokers who have forced migrants into service under inhumane conditions on fishing boats.

The ministry pledged the government would continue to work to stop slave labor and to cooperate with the industry and international organizations.

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