Sri Lanka has established a Safe Migration Promotion Unit (SMPU) at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) in Katunayake, Labor & Foreign Employment Minister Manusha Nanayakkara says.
According to the lawmaker, this unit was appointed on the directives of the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) which looks into gender equity and equality with special emphasis on looking into gender-based discrimination and violations of women’s rights in Sri Lanka.
He said it is tasked with conducting primary and secondary inquiries on the local migrant workers, in a bid to prevent Sri Lankans traveling abroad on tourist visas from falling prey to human trafficking syndicates.
The unit will also provide proper guidance to Sri Lankan migrant workers. It will primarily focus on locals traveling to Malaysia, Oman, and Dubai Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on tourist visas.
Nanayakkara said the unit will be in operation round the clock under the purview of the National Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force.
The unit consists of officers of the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE), the Department of Immigration & Emigration, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), and the State Intelligence Service (SIS).
The minister is confident that the objectives of this unit can be achieved as multiple state institutions are working in cooperation to crack down on human trafficking.