(submitted by Australia, Malaysia)
Observing the consideration in the Tokyo Declaration that interdependence and regional cohesion is growing within the Asia Pacific, providing a sound basis for increased regional cooperation and that the APPF could contribute to the region’s peace, stability and prosperity;
Reiterating the determination expressed in the Vancouver Declaration to support a cooperative approach to handling tensions and potential problems, as exemplified by the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), and to conduct political and security dialogue at a variety of levels and through different channels using existing bilateral and multilateral relationships;
Acknowledging that illegal immigration, people smuggling and people trafficking are such like activities of global scope that threaten the capacity of states to control their borders, which is the sovereign right and legitimate interest of each country;
Recognising that, as with other aspects of international crime, people smugglers and traffickers may undermine judicial and policing processes and may compromise the rights of those victims of people smugglers who have protection needs;
Recognising that no country alone can deal successfully with people smuggling and trafficking, recalls Resolution 17 of the 9th Annual Meeting of the APPF, which stressed the need for all States, and other international bodies to share the responsibility in seeking durable and timely solutions to the problem of refugees in joint efforts to prevent conditions that might give rise to the flight of refugees, and to address the root causes of refugee outflows, particularly in the countries of origin;
Noting the Bangkok Declaration on Irregular Migration of 23 April 1999, as the basis for regional cooperation in combating people smuggling and trafficking in the Asia Pacific region;
Recognising the outcomes of the Regional Ministerial Conference on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime held at Bali, Indonesia, from 26 to 28 February 2002,
1. Call upon all APPF member countries to recognise the need for integrated and comprehensive regional and international cooperation to address more effectively the issues of people smuggling and people trafficking, especially through information sharing, cooperation between agencies and governments , capacity building and strengthening legal and administrative frameworks;
2. Urge all APPF member countries to examine their border controls to ensure that all possible measures are being taken to prevent people smuggling and other transnational crimes and to intensify their efforts to introduce and enforce penalties for people smuggling and people trafficking;
3. Urge all APPF member countries to ensure that adequate measures to deter and disrupt people smugglers and traffickers and to intercept their clients, include measures to identify and safeguard the needs of those people requiring the protection of the international community;
4. Urge all APPF member countries to assist in the timely return in a humane manner of undocumented illegal immigrants.
5. Urge all concerned to participate in the activities taking place under the two Ad Hoc Experts’ Groups established at the Regional Ministerial Conference on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime held in Bali in February 2002.
6. Urge all concerned states to participate at the Ministerial-level in the follow-up Conference to be held in Bali in April 2003, during which representatives will determine the future direction of regional cooperation designed to combat people smuggling, trafficking in persons and related transnational crime.
7. Recommend the full participation in regional consultative mechanisms, such as the inter-governmental Asia Pacific Consultations on Refugees, Displaced Persons and Migrants, to ensure a strategic regional approach to dealing with irregular migration and humanitarian issues.
8. Take steps to eliminate the abuse and trafficking of women and children for sexual exploitation, forced marriages, forced labour, pornography and prostitution must be done by and involve both the country of origin and receiving country.
9. Encourage all APPF members to cooperate with each other as well as internationally, regionally and bilaterally to stop the abuse and trafficking of women and children for labour and immoral purposes.