DE RUEHRK #0031/01 0541631
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 231631Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY REYKJAVIK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4291
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RUEHC/DEPT OF LABOR WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RUEAHLC/HOMELAND SECURITY CENTER WASHDC
RUEHMD/AMEMBASSY MADRID 0025
RUEHVL/AMEMBASSY VILNIUS 0052
RUEHMA/AMEMBASSY MALABO 0001
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 10 REYKJAVIK 000031
DEPT FOR EUR/NB, G/TIP, G-Laura Pena, INL, DRL, PRM, EUR/PGI
STATE PASS USAID
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KTIP KCRM PHUM KWMN SMIG KFRD ASEC PREF ELAB KMCA
SUBJECT: ICELAND: 2010 ANTI-TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS (TIP) REPORT
REF: A) 09 STATE 2094
REYKJAVIK 00000031 001.3 OF 010
SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED -- ENTIRE TEXT
1. (SBU) Summary: In 2009 Iceland took significant steps to combat
trafficking in persons. The Government of Iceland, for the first
time, prosecuted alleged trafficking violators on TIP specific
charges. In addition, the government passed and began to implement
the country's first anti-TIP national action plan. The parliament
also passed legislation that aligns Iceland's legal definition on
human trafficking with that of the Palermo Protocol, thus paving the
way for possible ratification of the protocol this year.
Iceland is a country of destination and transit for trafficked women
(primarily in the sex industry) and to a lesser extent for men
(restaurant and construction industry). It is not believed to be a
source country and there are no current indications of trafficking
within Iceland. Most alleged cases include underpaid and/or
mistreated workers in nightclubs and massage parlors as well as
prostitutes trafficked from Eastern Europe, Africa, Brazil, and
Southeast Asia. The government provided trafficking victims and
witnesses with police protection and social assistance. End
2. (SBU) Embassy point of contact on the trafficking in persons
(TIP) issue is Political Officer Josh Rubin, tel.
+354-562-9100x2294, fax +354-562-9139, unclassified e-mail
Hours spent on preparation:
- Pol Officer (FS 03) 25 hrs
- Pol Assistant 51 hrs
- A/DCM 5 hrs
Total: 81 hrs
Begin text of submission:
3. (SBU) THE COUNTRY'S TIP SITUATION:
-- A. The amount of information available and the attention focused
on the TIP problem in Iceland increased dramatically this year, due
in large part to several high profile TIP cases. The media reported
extensively on the subject, government officials spoke openly about
the problem and the NGO community became more engaged on the topic.
Most information regarding human trafficking remains anecdotal in
nature. The Icelandic Red Cross published a comprehensive report in
August on the human trafficking problem in Iceland. The report
claimed that there were at least 59 and possibly as many as 128
cases of human trafficking to Iceland in the past three years. This
estimate, which relied heavily on second-hand information and
anecdotes, is the first attempt to quantify the trafficking problem
in Iceland. The Government of Iceland chose to neither publicly
confirm nor dispute these figures. Privately, however, several
government officials opined that the figures in the Red Cross report
were too high. The government does intend to commission its own
analysis of the trafficking situation in Iceland in the near
Extensive media reporting on TIP issues occurred during the year,
most of it related to two high-profile incidents of alleged
trafficking that are discussed in question B. Also receiving
significant media coverage was the unveiling in March of the
country's first comprehensive anti-trafficking action plan and a
government-sponsored TIP symposium that took place in October.
Media coverage of these incidents and events was generally accurate
-- B. Iceland is a country of destination and transit for
trafficked women (primarily in the sex industry) and to a lesser
extent for men (restaurant and construction industry). It is not
believed to be a source country and there are no current indications
of trafficking within Iceland. Post sources agree that, with rare
exceptions, victims are trafficked primarily to the greater
Reykjavik metropolitan area.
REYKJAVIK 00000031 002.3 OF 010
The Red Cross report, mentioned earlier in question A, posits that
70 percent of all trafficking victims in Iceland are associated with
the sex industry. Most alleged cases include underpaid and/or
mistreated workers in nightclubs and massage parlors as well as
prostitutes trafficked from Eastern Europe, Africa, Brazil, and
Southeast Asia. Nightclub and massage parlor workers -- who are
allegedly forced to work as prostitutes -- may stay for several
months before being trafficked onward, while other prostitutes may
spend only a few days in Reykjavik before being moved abroad.
Two high profile incidents relating to sex trafficking occurred in
Iceland this year.
-- In October 2009, prosecutors indicted Catalina Ncogo, an
Icelandic citizen of Equatorial Guinean origin, on charges of human
trafficking, profiting from prostitution as a third party, and drug
smuggling. Ncogo was accused of deceiving another woman, a
compatriot from Equatorial Guinea, into coming to Iceland for a
vacation and then holding her captive for a number of months. The
trafficking indictment was the first charge of this nature in
Iceland. On December 1 the Reykjanes District Court acquitted Ncogo
of the human trafficking charge, but convicted her on the charges of
profiting from prostitution and drug smuggling. She was sentenced
to two years in jail but she appealed the decision to the Supreme
Court. In addition, the State Prosecutor appealed the not guilty
verdict on trafficking charges to the Supreme Court. Two days
later, Ncogo was arrested again on charges of trafficking in a
separate case. She remains in custody and no trial date has been
set for either of her pending cases.
-- Five Lithuanian men were indicted in the District Court of
Reykjanes in January 2010 on charges of human trafficking. The men
were accused of bringing a 19-year-old girl from Lithuania to
Iceland with the intention of sexually exploiting her. The
Reykjanes Police uncovered the plot upon the woman's arrival in
country and she was quickly placed under 24-hour protective
surveillance. The alleged perpetrators have remained under police
custody since their arrest in October. The five Lithuanian men, as
well as one Icelander who was also later indicted on charges of
human trafficking relating to the incident, were tried in court and
a verdict is pending.
Reports of labor exploitation of foreign construction workers (in
rare cases, possibly trafficked to Iceland) have decreased
dramatically in the past few years. Undocumented foreign workers -
mostly Baltic and Eastern European - in Iceland's construction and
manufacturing sector may be exploited, but most sources believe that
these are cases of immigrant and employment law violations rather
than trafficking in persons. Press accounts of such cases have
drastically decreased during the reporting period compared to
previous years; probably because the demand for such workers has
decreased in the wake of Iceland's financial and economic crisis.
There was no evidence of trafficking in children.
-- C. With regard to sex trafficking, most alleged cases include
underpaid and/or mistreated workers in nightclubs and massage
parlors. Nightclub dancers are allegedly encouraged, and possibly
obligated, to provide sexual services during performances in private
rooms as well as to make prostitution calls outside the clubs.
Foreign prostitutes brought to Iceland for shorter periods of time
are allegedly required to provide sexual services in hotels or
private apartments, where they stay during their time in the
Reports of undocumented foreign workers living in industrial space
and less-than-optimal living conditions have mostly vanished from
Icelandic news reports. Many of the Eastern European and Baltic
citizens who came to Iceland in search of employment appear to have
returned to their home countries in the wake of the financial and
economic crisis that hit Iceland in October 2008.
-- D. Women from Eastern Europe, Russia, Africa, Brazil, and
Southeast Asia, involved in the sex industry, appear to be the
primary victims of TIP in Iceland.
REYKJAVIK 00000031 003.3 OF 010
-- E. Traffickers in Iceland tend to operate in small groups,
either independently or with ties to larger organized crime
syndicates. A February 2009 report by the National Police
Commissioner confirmed the existence of organized prostitution in
Iceland. The report went on to suggest that Icelandic criminal
elements likely serve as local agents for foreign organized crime
rings who may be financing prostitution operations. Traffickers in
Iceland, the report concluded, are also likely connected with
dealers of illegal narcotics.
Traffickers allegedly take advantage of international laws to
transport their victims into and out of Iceland. Iceland is in the
Schengen Zone as well as the European Economic Area (EEA), which
allows for the free passage of travelers and workers between Iceland
and other European countries. Workers from EEA countries may come
to Iceland visa-free for up to three months to seek employment.
Traffickers reportedly use this provision to bring prostitutes to
the country and then move them again before the expiration of the
three-month period, thereby removing the need for false documents or
fraudulent work permit applications.
There are no reports of travel or employment agencies or marriage
brokers acting as fronts for traffickers.
4. (SBU) SETTING THE SCENE FOR THE GOVERNMENT'S ANTI-TIP EFFORTS:
-- A. The government of Iceland has acknowledged that trafficking
is a worldwide problem from which Iceland is not immune. Several of
Iceland's highest officials have spoken publicly about the problem.
Foreign Minister Ossur Skarphedinsson opened a government-sponsored
symposium on human trafficking by declaring the GOI's unwavering
support for the fight against human trafficking. He stressed that
TIP was a problem in the country and a top priority for the
government. Noting that the GOI has already drafted and issued a
national anti-TIP action plan, the Minister said ratifying the
Palermo Protocol during the current parliamentary season was
imperative. More than 100 people attended the symposium which was
sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of
Justice and Human Rights on October 30.
Earlier, in March, the Minister of Social Affairs at the time, Asta
Ragnheidur Johannesdottir, acknowledged that trafficking was a
problem when she presented the first Icelandic anti-TIP action plan
to parliament. At that time, she said, "Human trafficking is one of
the most appalling forms of transnational organized crime and it is
very important to capture the traffickers and provide trafficking
victims with protection and assistance. The government's message
[with this action plan] is clear; human trafficking will not be
tolerated here." The action plan includes several key steps
including: criminalizing the buying of sex; banning and outlawing
strip clubs; granting temporary residence permits to TIP victims and
establishing an expert anti-TIP team to oversee TIP issues in
Iceland. Several of these steps have been implemented but most are
not yet in force. The government hopes to have them all enacted by
the end of 2012 (see section 5 (Prevention) for details on what has
-- B. On October 1, the Ministry of Justice and Ecclesiastical
Affairs became the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights and, at the
same time, it became the lead agency for TIP issues, taking over
from the Ministry of Social Affairs. Institutions and agencies under
the Ministry of Justice that share TIP responsibilities include: the
Directorate of Immigration, the State Prosecutor's Office, and the
National Commissioner of Police and local police forces. The
Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Social Affairs
(including the Equal Rights Office and Directorate of Labor) are
also involved in anti-trafficking efforts.
-- C. In previous years, lack of a detailed understanding of the
problem of human trafficking was an obstacle to moving forward on
the issue. A previous Minister of Justice famously stated that
drafting an anti-TIP action plan was not that urgent and that
concrete actions spoke louder than words. This attitude has changed,
REYKJAVIK 00000031 004.3 OF 010
however, with the increased attention that the matter is receiving
in the media. The fight against TIP is now on the radar screen and
the current government is taking active steps to combat the
The major obstacle to combating TIP is now funding and resources,
especially for law enforcement. The country's entire local and
national police forces are comprised of only 834 individuals (as of
February 1, 2009). While law enforcement officials note that there
are many advantages to operating with such a small police force,
there are also obvious limits on the amount of resources that can be
devoted specifically to the problem of TIP. To compound the problem,
Iceland's already stretched law enforcement resources are shrinking
in the wake of the economic crisis that began in October 2008.
Corruption does not pose a problem for TIP resources in Iceland.
According to government officials, funding for TIP victim assistance
is also not a problem in Iceland. Government officials noted,
however, that funding for trafficking victims is currently drawn
from a general "foreigners in need" funding allotment and not from a
TIP specific allotment.
-- D. There is no systematic monitoring or reporting by the
government of its anti-trafficking efforts. According to officials
at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, however, the Government of
Iceland provides some self-reporting on the trafficking situation
via the mandatory reports that it submits to UN bodies and to the
International Organization for Migration. These reports are
According to the anti-TIP action plan, however, the Specialist and
Coordination Team for Human Trafficking intends to introduce a
registration system concerning possible TIP cases in Iceland. This
registry will be used to monitor the status of human trafficking in
Iceland and trends that occur in this arena. The general findings
and statistics from this effort will be made available to Icelandic
authorities and international organizations.
-- E. The National Register of Persons is a register of all those
who have been domiciled in Iceland since 1952. The registered items
include ID number, name, domicile, citizenship, previous countries
of citizenship, country of origin, etc. In addition, all changes to
an individual's civil status are maintained, among them birth,
baptism, marital status, domicile, death, etc. All residents of
Iceland, both Icelandic and foreign, are registered in the National
Register of Persons. Only tourists, whether on tourist visa or not,
are not registered.
--F. Law enforcement information is generally accessible to the
government and the two sides cooperate well on combating
trafficking. Law enforcement officials maintain records on the
number of reported trafficking incidents, subsequent investigations
and indictments. The Icelandic Specialist and Coordination Team for
Human Trafficking has access to this information and, if needed,
could comprehensively assess law enforcement efforts.
5. (SBU) INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION OF TRAFFICKERS:
-- A. Iceland passed legislation on March 10, 2003 specifically
prohibiting the trafficking of persons. In December 2009,
parliament amended the legislation and updated slightly the
definition of what qualifies as trafficking in Iceland. The
Icelandic definition of trafficking is now aligned with that of the
Palermo Protocol. The government says that this will pave the way
for ratification of the protocol in 2010. Some experts also believe
that the amended language could make convictions easier to achieve.
The full text of Article 227a of Iceland's General Penal Code
outlawing trafficking in persons now states:
Anyone becoming guilty of the following acts, one or more, for the
purpose of sexually abusing a person or for forced labor or to
remove his/her organs shall be punished for human trafficking with
up to 8 years imprisonment:
1. Procuring, removing, handing over, removing, housing or accepting
someone who has been subjected to unlawful force under Art. 225 or
REYKJAVIK 00000031 005.3 OF 010
deprived of freedom as per Art. 226 or threat as per Art. 233 or
unlawful deception by awakening, strengthening or exploiting his/her
lack of understanding of the person concerned about circumstances or
by exploiting the wretched condition of the person concerned.
2. Procuring, removing, handing over, housing or accepting an
individual younger than 18 years of age.
3. Rendering payment or other gain in order to acquire the approval
for the abuse from a person who has the power over the actions of
The same penalty shall be applied to a person accepting payment or
other gain according to clause 3, para. 1.
If a child is violated against, as per para. 1, then this shall be
taken into account to make the sentence more severe. The same
penalty shall be applied to a person who is guilty of the following
acts, one or more, that are intended to facilitate human
1. Falsifying travel and identification documents.
2. Aiding and abetting the procurement of such identification,
either directly or indirectly.
3. Withholding, removing, damaging, or destroying the travel and
identification documents of another person.
The law covers both internal and transnational forms of trafficking.
The government has, in the past, prosecuted trafficking-related
cases under the General Penal Code Articles 57 and 155, which outlaw
alien smuggling and document forgery, respectively.
-- B. Trafficking of persons for sexual exploitation is punishable
by up to eight years in prison.
-- C. Trafficking of persons for forced labor is punishable by up
to eight years in prison. The law explicitly outlaws the
confiscation of passports or travel documents. It also outlaws the
exploitation of a person's lack of knowledge or wretched conditions.
(The law can be found, in its entirety, under question A of this
-- D. Rape is punishable by up to 16 years in prison, but actual
sentences are generally range from only one to three years'
imprisonment. The maximum penalty for TIP violators is 8 years of
imprisonment but there have been no guilty verdicts yet handed out,
so actual penalties for TIP violations are unknown. It is not
possible, at this time, to compare the actual penalties prescribed
for rape violators to those prescribed for TIP violators. However,
two current cases involving alleged TIP violators are ongoing. If
the accused are found guilty, the actual sentences handed down by
the courts would give the first indication of how penalties for
these two crimes compare.
-- E. Police conducted three investigations during the reporting
period. The government prosecuted a total of eight individuals on
charges of trafficking stemming from these investigations. One
individual was found not guilty of the trafficking charges (although
she was found guilty of profiting from prostitution as a third party
and drug smuggling) and the remaining seven indictments are still
pending. (The full details regarding these investigations and
indictments can be found in section 1, question B).
-- F. Students from the Icelandic National Police College annually
participate in classes held by the Sudurnes Commissioner of Police
and Customs that include instruction on recognizing and
investigating human trafficking issues. During the reporting period,
an OSCE representative, who specializes in TIP issues, participated
in the instruction. Additionally, senior Keflavik International
Airport officials and border police have been funded by the
government to attend anti-trafficking courses abroad, e.g. at the
European Police Academy, as well as conferences on TIP sponsored by,
for example, the OSCE, FRONTEX, and the Nordic Council of
--G. During the reporting period, the Sudurnes police district
(that includes Keflavik International Airport) cooperated with
Lithuanian police authorities on a prominent TIP case involving the
trafficking of a young Lithuanian woman. The Sudurnes Police also
REYKJAVIK 00000031 006.3 OF 010
cooperated with INTERPOL and EUROPOL on this case.
The Metropolitan police cooperated with Spanish authorities on the
TIP case involving a trafficking violator of Equatorial Guinean
descent. The assistance of Spanish authorities became necessary
when it was determined that two of the purported victims in that
case were Spanish citizens (additional details regarding these two
cases can be found in section 1, question B).
-- H. Iceland has not been asked to extradite a trafficking suspect
to another country. Icelandic law does not permit extradition of
Icelandic nationals, and no changes to the law are currently
-- I. No; not applicable.
-- J. There is no evidence of government officials being involved
in trafficking, and no government officials have ever been
investigated, prosecuted or convicted for such activity.
-- K. Iceland does not have a military. However, it has deployed
civilian personnel to UN and NATO operations as peacekeepers under
the auspices of the Icelandic Crisis Response Unit (ICRU), a
division of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The MFA has imposed a
code of conduct for ICRU personnel specifically banning involvement
in TIP or the purchase of sexual services while abroad. There were
no allegations of any such behavior by ICRU personnel.
-- L. There is no identified problem of child sex tourism in
Iceland nor are there any reports of Icelanders operating as child
6. (SBU) PROTECTION AND ASSISTANCE TO VICTIMS:
-- A. There is no specific provision in the law guaranteeing
government protection to TIP victims and witnesses. In practice,
however, the government has provided this service when the situation
warrants. The most notable example of this occurred in the case
involving a Lithuanian victim (full details regarding the case can
be found in Section A, part B). In that instance the victim, upon
arrival, was immediately placed under 24-hour protective police
surveillance. The victim remains under police surveillance at the
end of the reporting period. In addition, at least one witness in
the case, and a second witness in a different case, were also placed
under police surveillance.
-- B. There are no government-run victim care facilities that are
specifically dedicated to assisting TIP victims. In the past,
however, purported TIP victims have been received by the Women's
Shelter in Reykjavik. The shelter is run independently from the
government but, like most organizations in Iceland, it relies
heavily on government funding. The 2010 state budget allocates IKR
40.2 million ($321,600) to the Women's Shelter. Foreign victims
have the same access to this shelter as domestic TIP victims.
In addition, the government has demonstrated the capacity to provide
a private domicile in unique individual instances. This notably
occurred in the case of a Lithuanian trafficking victim (full
details in Section 1, question A). The victim, shortly upon her
arrival in country, was placed in a private domicile for safety
concerns. The victim remains in this private domicile at the end of
the reporting period.
There is no specialized care center for male victims, however, they
may avail themselves of general social services. The national and
local governments may also refer male victims to NGOs that provide
food, shelter, legal advice, and health care. In cases involving
unaccompanied children, municipal and state child protection
services are responsible for assistance.
-- C. According to a regulation that the Minister of Health
approved in December, TIP victims are now entitled to free medical
care even if they are not covered by Icelandic medical insurance.
Prior to this change, trafficking victims were provided with free
access to the medical system via a provision that governs general
REYKJAVIK 00000031 007.3 OF 010
The general victims' protection law is currently used to provide
victims of trafficking with free legal services. Under this law,
all victims are appointed a legal counsel that can guide the victim
thrugh the Icelandic legal process and inform victimsregarding
their rights. This counsel can also ac as the victim's attorney
should the victim requre legal representation in court.
There are no sychological services that are specific to trafficing
victims. Trafficking victims, however, reguarly utilize the
services of the Icelandic Counseing and Information Center for
Survivors of Sexul Violence (Stigamot). The center is run
indepedently from the government but, like most organizaions in
Iceland, it relies heavily on governmentfunding. The 2010 state
budget allocates IKR 33.2 million ($265,600) to Stigamot.
-- D. The government, through the Directorate of Immigration,
granted a temporary residence permit on humanitarian grounds to at
least one TIP victim during the reporting period. This was done in
the case of a 19-year-old Lithuanian trafficking victim in a
The government also intends to present a bill to parliament in the
immediate future that will create a temporary residence permit
system that is specific to victims of trafficking. The permit will
grant residency status for a six-month reflection period to any
individual if there is the mere suspicion that the victim was
trafficked. A second permit, valid for one year with the
opportunity to renew, will also be made available to victims that
cooperate with the government or have particularly compelling
-- E. There is no specific legal provision for long-term government
assistance to TIP victims. Trafficking victims, however, may avail
themselves of the numerous social service programs that exist in
Iceland. These programs are available to those members of society
who need assistance in rebuilding their lives.
-- F. There is no official referral process to transfer victims
from protective custody to institutions that provide short- or
long-term care. In practice, however, an informal system appears to
be functioning effectively. The Women's Shelter and the Women's
Counseling Center (Stigamot) in Reykjavik reported close relations
with the local police force and stated that victims are generally
informed by law enforcement officials regarding the social services
available to them. While not officially transferred to the Women's
Shelter or the Counseling Center, victims are generally pointed in
The anti-TIP action plan, however, calls for the formation of a more
stringent referral system. One of the action items entitled "The
Rules of Procedures for the Police," states that the police should
establish rules of procedure for contacting and dealing with alleged
victims of human trafficking. These standardized procedures should
ensure that all alleged victims are informed of the remedies
available to assist them.
-- G. In the three formal TIP investigations that occurred during
this reporting period, there were three trafficking victims
identified--one in each case. All of these individuals were victims
of sexual exploitation and all received varying degrees of social
services. The Government of Iceland, however, does not produce
official statistics regarding the total number of trafficking
victims and it is possible that other victims exist.
-- H. The government does not have a formal system to proactively
identify victims of trafficking. The police, however, have received
"passenger analysis" training that they employ at the airports. It
is this technique that is, in part, credited with identifying the
Lithuanian trafficking victim at Keflavik International Airport. In
addition, the government is working to design a checklist for
customs and law enforcement officials that can be used to assist in
identifying potential trafficking victims.
Prostitution is legal in Iceland, however, the advertisement of
prostitution, the purchasing of sex and profiting from prostitution
REYKJAVIK 00000031 008.3 OF 010
as a third party are all illegal. There is, therefore, no legal or
regulated commercial sex trade in Iceland. Those law enforcement
officers who most regularly deal with the country's illegal sex
industry have received TIP-specific training and are cognizant of
the need to protect victims' rights.
-- I. The rights of trafficking victims are generally respected.
While no individual specifically identified as a trafficking victim
was detained or jailed, it is not uncommon for alleged immigration
violators or alleged violators of sex-industry laws to be detained.
Unidentified TIP victims may have been included in those detained.
-- J. The government encourages victims to assist in the
investigation and prosecution of trafficking. Victims may file civil
suits or seek legal action against traffickers and there are no
impediments to their access to legal redress. There is also no
specific provision in the law to prevent a material witness in a
court case against a former employer from obtaining other employment
or leaving the country. While there is no specific restitution
program for victims of trafficking in persons, such a program exists
for victims of violence and may be applicable for TIP victims.
-- K. The government provides its officials with TIP specific
training. All employees of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs received
TIP training organized by Iceland's Specialist and Coordination Team
for Human Trafficking. The training was designed to underscore the
importance of the trafficking problem and to increase awareness
among government officials regarding the issue.
As Iceland is not a source country for TIP victims, there have been
no victims assisted by Icelandic diplomats and consular personnel
abroad during the reporting period.
-- L. There have been no such cases identified in the reporting
period. While repatriated nationals would benefit from the same
social safety net as any other Icelander, there are no programs
specifically for victims of trafficking.
-- M. No international organizations or NGOs worked with
trafficking victims in Iceland during the reporting period. As
mentioned earlier, however, local NGOs were active.
7. (SBU) PREVENTION:
-- A. There were no specific anti-TIP information or education
campaigns conducted in Iceland this year. In previous years, the
government-funded Women's Counseling Center (Stigamot) conducted
information campaigns against rape and the purchasing of sexual
services. The campaigns were targeted at men and had the goal of
reducing the demand for the purchase of sexual services. These
campaigns, however, were not utilized this year.
According to the new anti-TIP action plan the government plans to
launch a similar educational campaign in 2010 that will also be
directed at the buyers of prostitution services, pornography and
other kinds of sex services. Another stated goal of the action plan
is to prepare a comprehensive educational program for professionals
and for public employees who, in their work, deal with human
-- B. The government monitors immigration and emigration patterns
for evidence of trafficking. In addition, the government screens
for potential trafficking victims at Keflavik International Airport,
the country's sole international airport.
-- C. In November, the Minister of Justice and Human Rights
appointed the Specialist and Coordination Team for Human Trafficking
in accordance with the new anti-TIP action plan. The Coordination
Team is the primary mechanism for interagency coordination and is
responsible for supervising all matters regarding human trafficking
in Iceland. The team consists of members from all the relevant
agencies and also includes representatives from those NGOs that
provide aid to TIP victems (including the Women's Counseling Center
and the Women's Shelter). The various law enforcement agencies are
also represented on the Coordination Team.
REYKJAVIK 00000031 009.3 OF 010
In addition, there is a Ministry of Justice appointed coordination
group on foreigner issues that regularly discusses TIP issues as
part of its agenda. The group consists of the National Police
Commissioner, members of the Metropolitan Police, the Sudurnes
Police Commissioner (covering Keflavik International Airport) and
the Directorate of Immigration.
-- D. The Icelandic parliament approved the adoption of the first
Icelandic national plan of action to address TIP in March 2009. The
action plan is divided into the following nine chapters:
1. Ratification of international treaties and harmonization of
2. Specialist and co-ordination team and the supervision of affairs
concerning human trafficking.
3. Education to professionals and public officials.
4. Protection of victims and aid to victims.
5. Police provisions and investigation into alleged trafficking in
6. Actions against demand in the prostitution and pornography
7. International co-operation.
8. Proactive search and emergency phone numbers.
9. Registration of information and intelligence gathering.
Several of the goals recommended in the report have been enacted but
the majority of them are not yet in force. The government hopes to
have them all enacted by the end of 2012. So far, the government
has either achieved or made significant progress on the following
goals from the national action plan: appointed the Specialist and
Coordination Team; criminalized the buying of sexual services;
aligned the legal definition of human trafficking with that of the
Palermo Protocol (but ratification of the protocol is still
pending); provided TIP victims with legal counsel; submitted a bill
to parliament that would prohibit any kind of nude shows in places
of entertainment; and submitted a bill to parliament on a code of
conduct that would make clear that the purchase of sex services by
any Icelandic Government representative will not be tolerated.
-- E: In April, parliament passed a law criminalizing the buying of
sexual services. While prostitution remains legal in Iceland, it is
now illegal to purchase sexual services, profit from prostitution as
a third party or advertise prostitution services. Criminalizing the
purchasing of sexual services was one of the goals explicitly stated
in the new action plan against human trafficking.
In addition, over the past several years, the government has taken
legal measures to reduce the number of strip clubs operating in
Iceland. Post sources believe this to be important as they claim
that strip clubs are the predominant loci of prostitution and TIP
cases. At the end of the reporting period, five or fewer strip
clubs remained in operation in the whole country. Although
legislation effectively outlaws strip shows, the owners of these
remaining clubs were apparently able to exploit loopholes in the law
on the operations of entertainment establishments to remain in
-- F. There have been no government actions taken to reduce the
participation of Icelandic nationals in international child sex
tourism. There were no cases during the reporting period in which
Icelandic nationals were alleged to have participated in child sex
-- G. Not applicable.
8. (SBU) PARTNERSHIPS:
-- A. The government has cooperated on TIP issues with the OSCE,
the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the Council of Baltic Sea
States (Task Force on Trafficking in Human Beings), and the Nordic
Council of Ministers.
The government also sponsored an international symposium on human
trafficking in October, the first of its kind in Iceland. The OSCE's
deputy TIP official participated in the symposium. More than 100
people attended the symposium which was sponsored by the Ministry of
REYKJAVIK 00000031 010.3 OF 010
Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights.
In addition, Embassy Reykjavik and G/TIP organized a DVC with
Icelandic government officials, NGOs representatives, and police
officials in January.
-- B. The Icelandic government annually provides financial
assistance earmarked for TIP field projects in a specific developing
country via the OSCE. The OSCE handles the details of the project
and advises the Icelandic government where to send the assistance.
In 2009, Iceland contributed ISK 3.1 million ($24,800) to Azerbaijan
through the OSCE.