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The Embassy of the United States in Yerevan has congratulated the Government of Armenia on maintaining a high status for the third year in a row in the Department of State’s 2015 Trafficking in Persons assessment.

In a statement released on Tuesday, the Embassy emphasized that of the 188 countries covered in the report only 31 achieved “the coveted Tier 1 status.”

“The Government of Armenia earned its Tier 1 ranking by taking concrete actions to fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking. For example, in 2014, the Armenian Parliament approved a law establishing standard procedures for the identification, support, protection, and reintegration of suspected and identified trafficking victims by national and local government bodies, NGOs, international organizations, and civil society,” the Embassy said.

The press release added that the Armenian police have also successfully identified foreign victims trafficked in Armenia and referred them to care, and the government has maintained “strong collaborative working ties” with anti-trafficking NGOs, local media, donor organizations, and regional partners.

It also emphasized that the 2015 Trafficking in Persons Report also contains several recommendations for the Government of Armenia to consider implementing “in order to more effectively identify, treat, and reintegrate victims of trafficking and to prosecute traffickers.”

Many of the recommendations, the Embassy said, depend not just on Government actions alone, but require enhanced cooperation with domestic NGOs and civil society, as well as with regional authorities and NGOs.

“The Embassy values its partnership with the Government of Armenia in the fight against trafficking in persons and looks forward to working with the Government more, particularly in the areas of formal victim-witness protection and victim identification,” the Embassy statement concluded.

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