This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available. UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 06 ATHENS 000573
FOR EUR/SE, EUR/PGI, G/TIP, INL/HSTC, G, DRL, PRM, IWI
E.O. 12958: N/A
SUBJECT: GREECE PART 4: TIP REPORT SUBMISSION 2006
REF: A. STATE 3836
B. THESSALONIKI 25
C. ATHENS 538
D. ATHENS 512
E. ATHENS 431
F. ATHENS 414
G. THESSALONIKI 14
H. ATHENS 369
I. ATHENS 346
J. ATHENS 328
K. 05 ATHENS 3157
L. 05 ATHENS 3144
M. 05 ATHENS 3110
N. 05 ATHENS 2959
O. 05 ATHENS 2927
P. 05 THESSALONIKI 86
Q. 05 ATHENS 2802
R. 05 THESSALONIKI 81
S. 05 ATHENS 2779
T. 05 ATHENS 2742
U. 05 ATHENS 2113
V. 05 ATHENS 1626
W. 05 TIRANA 968
X. 05 ATHENS 1268
1. The following is Sensitive but Unclassified. Please
2. (SBU) Below are Embassy Athens' responses to the 2006 TIP
report questionnaire. Text is keyed to Ref A request for
"Protection and Assistance to Victims" Section. This is the
fourth of four cables.
3. PROTECTION AND ASSISTANCE TO VICTIMS:
-- A. Does the government assist victims, for example, by
providing temporary to permanent residency status, relief
from deportation, shelter and access to legal, medical and
psychological services? If so, please explain. Does the
country have victim care and victim health care facilities?
If so, can post provide the number of victims placed in these
Greece's 2002 anti-trafficking law and 2003 Presidential
Decree call for comprehensive health services for victims,
shelter, protection, and temporary relief from deportation at
the prosecutor's request. The 2005 Immigration Law provides
for centrally issued residence permits with no fee and a
one-month reflection period for victims. The GoG reported
that of the 137 victims identified in 2005, 57 accepted
support and protection by the state, 20 were granted
suspensions of deportation (100 percent of those who were
subject to deportation), 19 were provided shelter and other
victim care from state and/or NGO shelters, and 32 were
assisted by their embassies after referral from the GoG.
Other victims contacted their embassies independent of GoG
assistance and so are not included in these statistics. A
number of victims identified in 2004 continued to be
sheltered at NGO shelters. 29 special residence permits for
TIP victims were granted or renewed in 2005. (NGOs reported
that, as occurs with residence permits granted to "normal"
immigrants, there were sometimes months-long bureaucratic
delays in the issuance of the residence/work permits which
left the victims unable to seek work or travel.)
Through the MFA, information from all NGO-run shelters was
provided for all victims hosted in 2005, including details of
nationality, and dates of protection and services provided to
victims over the past two years.
According to information from the MPO, the majority of the
identified 137 victims had legal documentation to reside in
Greece, and did not request protection from the state. The
police report that the majority of victims departed for their
native countries without government repatriation assistance
and a small number remain in Greece. During 2005, IOM
repatriated 5 Romanian victims and the infant of one victim,
2 Moldovan victims, 3 Ukrainian victims, 2 Russian victims, 3
Bulgarian victims, and 2 Lithuanian victims.
-- B. Does the government provide funding or other forms of
support to foreign or domestic NGOs for services to victims?
(SBU) In 2005 the GoG authorized approximately two million
euros to a variety of NGO programs and projects, including
shelters, legal assistance, conferences, trainings, and
prevention in source countries. (See Prevention - D.) (Note:
Please protect - Do not publish amount of GoG funding as it
is not publicly released. End Note.)
-- C. Is there a screening and referral process in place,
when appropriate, to transfer victims detained, arrested or
placed in protective custody by law enforcement authorities
to NGO's that provide short- or long-term care?
There is a screening process in place which has effectively
transferred identified by law enforcement authorities into
protective state and/or NGO custody. The Memorandum of
Cooperation now formally allows police to cooperate with
NGOs, which has resulted in 19 victims being transferred from
the police to NGO shelters. For example, three Nigerian
victims were identified as TIP victims in December 2005 at an
Athens police station, after which they were transferred to a
secret location Athens shelter. With the entry into force on
January 1 of the Immigration Law, which provides for the
reflection period, police now have more flexibility to send
victims to protective custody. Police report using the
government hotline to coordinate with NGOs on victim care.
In practice, the referral process operates most effectively
when law enforcement officials are the first contact point
for the victim. When NGOs are the first contact point, NGOs
report that victims are not always entered into the
protection system, possibly because there are not necessarily
criminal charges associated with the case or because the NGO
cannot convince the victim to seek protected status from the
-- D. Are the rights of victims respected, or are victims
also treated as criminals? Are victims detained, jailed, or
deported? If detained or jailed, for how long? Are victims
fined? Are victims prosecuted for violations of other laws,
such as those governing immigration or prostitution?
In the past, victims who were arrested for immigration
violations or prostitution were sometimes tried alongside
their traffickers. Greek law does not yet exclude TIP
victims from prosecution, but the prosecutor can and does
grant this reprieve on a case-by-case basis, and the GoG
reports that prosecutors did so with any and all crimes the
137 TIP victims identified in 2005 had "committed." The GoG
reports that the Council of Europe Convention Against
Trafficking in Human Beings which it signed on November 17,
2005 stipulates that victims not be tried for crimes
committed during the course of their victimization, so once
the Convention is ratified this "loophole," which is avoided
in practice, will be closed. NGOs complain that while
victims are no longer routinely prosecuted, there have been
cases where victims' identities have not been protected.
(Ref 05 Thess 81.)
In 2005, the penalty for a suspected victim's conviction were
reversed with the help of the Human Rights Ombudsman.
Victims have been convicted in the past for criminal acts
committed during their victimization. In one such case, a
non-recognized, suspected victim of trafficking who was
sheltered as a TIP victim was convicted of prostitution
violations. The NGO that sheltered her, Doctors of the
World, had grounds to believe she was a TIP victim, although
she did not cooperate with the prosecutor and did not seek
victim status. She learned she had been included on the
persona non grata (PNG) list (until 2015) because of her
conviction after attempting to renew her residence permit.
She appealed to the Human Rights Ombudsman in 2004 and the
Ombudsman contacted the MPO Aliens and Administrative
Division, which decided in December 2005 to remove her from
the PNG list "for humanitarian reasons" based on the
suspicion she had been a TIP victim.
-- E. Does the government encourage victims to assist in the
investigation and prosecution of trafficking? May victims
file civil suits or seek legal action against the
traffickers? Does anyone impede the victims' access to such
legal redress? If a victim is a material witness in a court
case against the former employer, is the victim permitted to
obtain other employment or to leave the country? Is there a
victim restitution program?
The government's record on encouraging TIP victims to testify
is mixed. As in the U.S., the process of granting victim
status and receiving a victim's work/residency permit is put
into motion when victims agree to cooperate with authorities
in the prosecution of their traffickers. Now that victims
are being granted residency/work permits (MOI reports 29
issued or renewed in 2005) and with other victims already
legally resident in Greece, more victims may remain in the
country to testify when their traffickers come to trial.
There is strong NGO support for some victims during court
cases, and all NGO representatives who have been present at
trials state that without such support, many victims would be
emotionally unable to testify. Prosecutors have told us
informally that it would be illegal under Greek law to
provide the proceeds of criminal enterprises to TIP victims.
NGOs still claim that victims are not always properly
notified of court summons to testify against traffickers,
with subpoenas sent to victims' prior addresses, i.e., the
places they were exploited. Traffickers have been released
pending trial in order for the courts to "track down"
witnesses in their home countries.
-- F. What kind of protection is the government able to
provide for victims and witnesses? Does it provide these
protections in practice? What type of shelter or services
does the government provide? Does it provide shelter or any
other benefits to victims for housing or other resources in
order to aid the victims in rebuilding their lives? Where are
child victims placed (e.g. in shelters, foster-care type
systems or juvenile justice detention centers)?
The law on Organized Crime (2928/2001) provides for witness
protection. If the victim is a witness to a crime that is
not organized crime, the MPO reports that the police will
protect the victim with an order of the prosecutor. In
practice, NGOs report that some identified and sheltered
victims receive threats from their traffickers and need
better protection. NGOs who run shelters complain of
inadequate security or police protection provided to the
shelter. One NGO refused to shelter a potential victim due
to fear it could not adequately protect her in its shelter
from her trafficker. NGOs, especially those who do victim
support and attend trials, report that they are also
threatened by traffickers and their highly-paid lawyers.
Child victims are officially turned over to the prosecutor
for children, but there are not specialized shelters for
child TIP victims so they are typically sheltered in
orphanages or other state institutions. The bilateral
agreement with Albania signed in February details
comprehensive child protections.
-- G. Does the government provide any specialized training
for government officials in recognizing trafficking and in
the provision of assistance to trafficked victims, including
the special needs of trafficked children? Does the
government provide training on protections and assistance to
its embassies and consulates in foreign countries that are
destination or transit countries? Does it urge those
embassies and consulates to develop ongoing relationships
with NGOs that serve trafficked victims?
The GOG provides anti-TIP training for police at all levels,
including retraining and lifelong training of police
personnel. There were 10 seminars for police and law
enforcement personnel in 2005 estimated to have trained more
than 1,300 officers on TIP. Child anti-trafficking NGOs have
presented information to police on the special needs of child
trafficking victims independently and at the seminars noted
above. The MPO issued a directive to all police in December
2004 reinforcing how to recognize, question, and assist
victims of TIP. The MFA charges its embassies and consulates
with some monitoring of source country NGOs that are partners
with Hellenic Aid funded NGOs and therefore funding from the
-- H. Does the government provide assistance, such as medical
aid, shelter, or financial help, to its repatriated nationals
who are victims of trafficking?
Not applicable - Greece is not a source country for TIP
-- I. Which international organizations or NGOs, if any, work
with trafficking victims? What type of services do they
provide? What sort of cooperation do they receive from local
--International Organization for Migration (IOM):
coordination with the GoG on repatriations of victims,
seminars and trainings for authorities, NGOs, social workers,
police prosecutors, and the diplomatic corps, public
awareness, coordination of diplomatic/NGO/GoG "Working
Group." IOM has excellent cooperation with local authorities
and receives GoG funding. It signed the MOC with the
--Stability Pact Thessaloniki Office (SPOT): Regional TIP
initiatives, holding a regional organized crime conference,
which included a TIP workshop. (Ref Thess 14)
--European Network of Women (ENOW): multilingual victims
hotline, operation of a shelter including provision of food
and clothing, psychosocial victim support, legal support and
advocacy, family contact public awareness, lobbying. ENOW
has good cooperation with local authorities and receives GoG
funding. It signed the MOC with the Interministerial Council.
--Greek Council for Refugees (GCR): legal support and
advocacy, family contact, seminars and trainings. GCR has
good cooperation with local authorities, receives GoG
funding, and signed the MOC with the Interministerial Council.
--International Society for the Support of Families (DESO):
operation of three shelters including provision of food and
clothing, medical and psychological and psychiatric support,
lobbying. DESO has some cooperation with local authorities,
received GoG funding and in-kind donation of the shelter
buildings. DESO signed the MOC with the Interministerial
--Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture (CRTV):
shelter, psychosocial and psychiatric support, legal support,
lobbying. CRTV has good, ad hoc cooperation especially with
local police authorities, receives victim referrals directly
from police, and is authorized GoG funding but is having
problems seeing it delivered. CRTV signed the MOC with the
--Nea Zoi/Association for the Support and Restoration of
Individuals in Prostitution: street work, victim
identification through street work and visits to detention
centers, victim support, lobbying. Nea Zoi has limited
cooperation with authorities as an independent, international
NGO, but attends "Working Group" meetings.
--Greek Helsinki Monitor (GHM): legal support and advocacy,
publications of the Galatsi Group, lobbying. Poor
cooperation with GoG, outspoken critic of GoG efforts on TIP
and other human rights issues.
--Association for the Social Support of Youth (ARSIS): victim
identification, coordination with TdH in Albania on child
victims, public awareness, lobbying. ARSIS has good
cooperation with authorities and has done outreach to
provincial police. ARSIS receives GoG funding and will
implement part of the $600,000 TACT project in Albania. ARSIS
signed the MOC with the Interministerial Council.
--Smile of the Child: shelters for primarily Greek children,
public awareness, lobbying. Excellent cooperation with
authorities, signed the MOC with the Interministerial
--Center for Research and Support for Victims of Maltreatment
and Social Exclusion (CVME or "EKYTHKA" in Greek): shelter,
psychosocial and legal support to victims, lobbying. Good
cooperation with authorities, receives GoG funding, signed
the MOC with the Interministerial Council.
--Klimaka-Agency for the Development of Human and Social
Capital: shelters, psychiatric and social support to victims,
vocational training and activities in shelters, public
awareness, lobbying. Excellent cooperation with authorities,
receives victim referrals directly from police, receives GoG
funding, signed the MOC with the Interministerial Council.
--Solidarity (NGO of the Greek Orthodox Church): shelter,
excellent cooperation with authorities, receives GoG funding,
signed the MOC with the Interministerial Council.
--ACT UP: STD and HIV screening, street work, victim
identification, support, and referral, lobbying. Good
cooperation with GoG despite criticism of GoG, receives GoG
--Mediterranean Women's Studies Center (KEGME): seminars and
training for police personnel in Albania. Receives GoG
funding, cooperation with GoG.
--European Public Law Center: codification of regional TIP
laws through the three-year "Project Hera" with
Serbia-Montenegro, Kosovo, Albania, Macedonia, BiH, Croatia,
Moldova, Belarus, and the Ukraine, undertaking a project on
enactment of TIP laws in Moldova. Receives GoG funding.
--Human Rights Defense Center (KEPAD): coordination of
Ariadne Regional Network, Greece/TIP working group at the UN.
Excellent cooperation with GoG, receives GoG funding, signed
MOC with Interministerial Council.
--The International Police Association (IPA): training
seminars for police on TIP. Excellent cooperation with
authorities, (IPA members are Hellenic National Police),
receives GoG funding, signed MOC with Interministerial
--Agapi: Thessaloniki-based social organization sponsored a
TIP awareness-raising event for 200 members of the general
public in February 2006. GoG officials responsible for TIP,
police, NGO reps, and others presented information on the TIP
phenomenon to students and citizens. (Ref Thess 25)
--Doctors of the World/Medecins du Monde (MdM): program to
benefit street children and orphans of Moldova. (Previously
MdM had a TIP shelter in Athens, but it was closed when the
new board shifted MdM's focus from TIP victims in Greece.)
Good cooperation with GoG, receives GoG funding. In May 2005
Doctors of the World-Greece organized an international
conference on "Raising Public Awareness about Women
Trafficking in Turkey: Anti-Trafficking Fora and Creation of
a Civil Society Network" with the Int'l Blue Crescent which
included speakers from Greek NGOs, the GoG, and Greek
Universities among the international panel.
--The Galatsi Group: Group of approximately 11 NGOs that
formerly met on a regular basis to discuss actions to combat
TIP. TIP related documents and submissions to international
organizations are published under the name of the group,
although they no longer regularly meet.
--Center for Research and Action on Peace (KEDE): establish,
equip, and operate a vocational training center in Armenia.
Limited cooperation with GoG, receives GoG funding.
--STOP NOW: Formerly focused on public awareness-raising.
While members still attend TIP-related meetings, such as the
"Working Group," the NGO has no funding or current projects.
Limited cooperation with GoG, signed MOC with
--Caritas Greece (NGO of the Catholic Church): Primarily
works with refugees, feeding program, legal support, held
seminar in 2005 entitled "Trafficking in Persons,
Sensitization for Prevention" in May 2005 with presentations
given by police, NGOs, and prominent Greeks. Caritas also
conducted TIP public awareness poster campaign with the
poster message with a picture of a young girl turned away and
the message: "Trafficking: Don't turn your back on Modern-day
Slavery... it is of immediate concern!! Every year it is
estimated that 700,000-4,000,000 people in the world are
BOUGHT, SOLD, MOVED, AND IMPRISONED against their will!" and
Caritas contact info.
--Transparency International-Greece: Galatsi Group Member.
--Social Aid of Hellas: Galatsi Group Member.
--Social and Educational Action Center for the Support of
Children and the Family: after school care, showers,
clothing, tutoring, and meal program for disadvantaged
children, especially Roma. Galatsi Group Member.
Other NGOs work on various TIP issues.
(U) The Embassy's point of contact on TIP is political
officer Karen Grissette. Email: Grissetteke@state.gov, Tel:
30-210-720-2551, Fax: 30-210-729-4307.