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UN expert on contemporary forms of slavery in first visit to Peru

GENEVA (6 May 2011) – UN Special Rapporteur Gulnara Shahinian will visit Peru from 9 to 20 May 2011 to assess the Government’s renewed efforts in fighting contemporary forms of slavery, such as forced labour in the logging and mining sector, domestic servitude and the worst forms of child labour.

“I will examine the situation in the country to identify best practices and remaining challenges, as well as explore solutions to address them,” said Ms. Shahinian launching the first mission to Peru by an independent expert designated by the UN Human Rights Council to monitor contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences.

The Special Rapporteur, who visits the country at the invitation of the Government, will travel to Lima and to the provinces of Madre de Dios and Ucayali to hold discussions with government officials, members of the judicial branch, representatives of non-governmental organizations, community members, trade unions, the private sector, academics, and others working in the field of contemporary forms of slavery.

A press conference will be held in Lima at the end of the Special Rapporteur’s visit - on Friday, 20 May 2011, at 11 am in UNDP Lima. Ms. Shahinian will present her mission’s findings at the Human Rights Council in 2011.

Gulnara Shahinian was appointed as the first Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, its causes and consequences in May 2008. She is a lawyer with extensive experience as an expert consultant for various UN, EU, Council of Europe, OSCE and government bodies on children’s rights, gender, migration and trafficking. Ms Shahinian is also a former trustee of the UN Voluntary Trust Fund on Contemporary forms of Slavery.

Learn more about the mandate and work of the Independent Expert: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/issues/slavery/rapporteur/index.htm

OHCHR Country Page – Peru: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/LACRegion/Pages/PEIndex.aspx

For additional information, please write to srslavery@ohchr.org. For media requests during the visit, please contact María Inés Scudellari (Tel.: +511 441 8745 / Cell +511 997893788 / email: ines.scudellari@unic.org).