US tells Sri Lanka to prosecute officials involved in trafficking

The United States has urged Sri Lanka to prosecute officials involved in human trafficking.The call was made in an annual report released by US Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on human trafficking. Pompeo will unveiled the 2018 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report at the US State Department yesterday (Thursday). On Sri Lanka, the report says while respecting due process, Sri Lanka must improve efforts to investigate and prosecute suspected traffickers, including complicit officials, and convict and punish offenders with sentences commensurate with other serious crimes. The report also proposes that Sri Lanka take steps to eliminate all recruitment fees charged to workers by labor recruiters and instead ensure they are paid by employers and to also expand the foreign employment bureau’s (SLBFE) mandate to include the regulation of sub-agents, promote safe and legal migration and ensure migration regulations do not discriminate on the basis of gender and increase efforts of the task force to institutionalize sustained Government coordination efforts.In the annual report, Sri Lanka remains in Tier 2 and the US says while the Government of Sri Lanka does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, it is making significant efforts to do so.According to the report, the Government demonstrated increasing efforts compared to the previous reporting period and therefore Sri Lanka remained on Tier 2. (Colombo Gazette) Sri Lanka was also urged to increase efforts to proactively identify trafficking victims and train officials on victim identification and referral procedures, especially to ensure victims are not detained or otherwise penalized for unlawful acts, such as immigration violations or prostitution, committed as a direct result of having been subjected to human trafficking.The US also urged Sri Lanka to improve protection services to ensure identified victims, including men and children, receive specialized care services. read more

Gogglewearing memorial vandal left scene covered in white paint police say as

The RAF Benevolent Fund said it was the fourth time in six years that the Bomber Command Memorial had been vandalised.It was first targeted in 2013 when a man daubed the word “Islam” on it shortly after the killing of Fusilier Lee Rigby outside Woolwich Barracks.A week later, a second man wrote “Lee Rigby’s killers should hang”, “EDL” and “F*** the police” on the memorial. He was jailed for 12 weeks. Vandals defaced the memorial to RAF Bomber Command heroes and Churchill and Roosevelt statue Vandals defaced the memorial to RAF Bomber Command heroes and Churchill and Roosevelt statueCredit: Jeremy Selwyn A workman cleans paint off the RAF Bomber Command Memorial in Green Pack after it was vandalised Police are appealing for information after releasing an image of the goggle-clad vandal who is believed to have vandalised five war memorials in central London.The vandal, dressed all in black and carrying an orange plastic bag, is seen approaching a memorial which was later seen covered in white paint.The first incident, which caused widespread public anger, occurred last Sunday night when white paint was splattered over the memorial to Bomber Command in London’s Green Park.But it later emerged that three other war memorials and plaque to a murdered police officer had also been targeted at around the same time.The targets included the Allies Statue statue of Second World War prime minister Sir Winston Churchill and his US counterpart Franklin D Roosevelt in New Bond Street, the Canada Memorial in Green Park, and the Royal Marines Graspan Memorial on The Mall. Detective Inspector Dave Watkinson said: “This wanton vandalism continues to illicit a strong response from the community. We have carried out an extensive review of local CCTV and are now satisfied that the person in the images released today is responsible for the damage. We are appealing for the media and public’s help to identify this person.”While it is not possible to identify the person’s face, someone may recognise their clothing. “The route we believe they took is usually very busy – especially Trafalgar Square – and they are likely to have been seen by a number of people. Did you see this person walking between statues? Were you travelling on public transport and remember seeing someone with white paint on their clothes?”I would urge anyone with information to come forward and speak with us.” A workman cleans paint off the RAF Bomber Command Memorial in Green Pack after it was vandalisedCredit:Rob Pinney/LNP The memorial to Yvonne Fletcher, the police officer who was murdered by a gunman during the 1984 Libyan Embassy siege, in St James’s Square, was also attacked.At the moment, the incidents are all being treated by the Metropolitan Police as linked.Detectives from Central West CID are investigating and are continuing to carry out a number of enquiries including forensic examination and the ongoing review of CCTV. Police believe they have traced the vandal’s path that night, and have asked anyone who was in the area that evening whether they saw a man matching this description.Officers think they commenced their acts of criminal damage at the Bomber Command memorial before heading along the Mall towards Trafalgar Square. They would have passed Canada House in the direction of St James’s Square, before ending on Jermyn Street. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more