Strict laws to thwart human smuggling

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –Sri Lanka is now formulating a legal structure and mechanisms to combat human smuggling and protecting its borders, Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff, Law and Order and Southern Development Minister Sagala Ratnayaka said.

He disclosed this addressing the seminar on combating the International Human Smuggling racket held at the Kingsbury Hotel, Colombo yesterday.

Minister Ratnayaka said stringent laws were needed to combat the human smuggling racket and combating the racket would not be possible without stringent laws and regulations. Extensive raids will be conducted to net in suspects involved in this racket.

The government hopes to implement laws and regulations in this regard to the letter and introduce new laws and regulations where necessary.

Ratnayaka said the Australian Institute of Strategic Policies had already conducted research on the human smuggling racket in Sri Lanka which had made several important revelations.

The government now had vital information regarding this racket carried out mostly in the Western, Wayamba and the Southern Coasts lines. Vital information regrading the racketeers, their modus operandi are in government possession today. This involves surreptitious preparation of passports and bribing of relevant officials. A mechanism had to be devised to combat all these fraudulent activities.

Sri Lanka had recently entered into an MOU with Australia in this regard which will help Sri Lanka to work closely with Australia in combating this racket by exchanging vital information regarding the racketeers involved in order to break the back of this racket.

The Minister said the human smuggling racket is an organised international racket rather than an individual racket. As such international co-operation including that of the Interpol was essential to combat it.

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