President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on Wednesday ratified the second amendment to the Maldives Anti-Human Trafficking Act (Act no. 12/2013).
The new amendment to Article 12 of the Act defines actions that constitute as trafficking of a person, while the amendment to Article 14 of the Act is concerning the trafficking of children. As per the new amendments, transporting a child to the Maldives with the intent of exploiting them, or transporting a child out of the country with the same intent, would be considered trafficking. Furthermore, moving a child within the country and recruiting them to a workforce while under a guardianship would also be considered as an act of trafficking.
Under the new amendments, conspiring to traffic a person or a child, giving orders to traffic a child, and altering travel documents of a person being trafficked are criminalised. It also gives the state power to seize funds and assets that may be linked to trafficking.
The amendments to the Maldives Anti-Human Trafficking Act were passed by the Parliament on Wednesday, 14th April 2021, at the 29th sitting of the first session of the People’s Majlis for this year. Upon ratification, the amendment has now been published in the Government Gazette.