On 5-6 July 2017, the UK hosted EU and African partners of the Khartoum Process to agree how to combat smuggling and trafficking in the Horn of Africa. The thematic meeting was specifically on ‘Tackling People Smuggling and Trafficking in Human Beings, including through enhanced Border Management’. Discussions were therefore focussed on cross-border investigative cooperation; capacity building; stronger governance; and compatible legislative frameworks. 

There was evidently strong discussions and desire for cooperation between the participants and discussions led to tangible points for action and follow up. Significant contributions were made by African partners and Expertise France (French Agency for international technical cooperation).

Amongst the key topics, a need to tackle cross-border financial flows: both small payments to smugglers and larger transfers of profits, was also highlighted. Participants agreed to focus on key transit hubs to combat smugglers and traffickers and to build trust with locals and migrants alike. 

The UK will now work with partners to develop an action plan, which will be presented to the Khartoum Process Steering Committee in October, to ensure delivery within the areas highlighted.