US honours Bangladesh's Tariqul Islam for preventing human trafficking

Mohammed Tariqul Islam, a Bangladeshi national, has been recognised as the 2022 Trafficking In Persons (TIP) Report Hero by the United States for his role in preventing human trafficking and for the rehabilitation of the victims.

Published : 20 July 2022, 05:27 PM
Updated : 20 July 2022, 05:27 PM

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken honoured six individuals from around the world as 2022 TIP Report Heroes in an event hosted by the US Department of State in Washington DC on Tuesday.

Each year, the TIP Heroes award honours individuals who demonstrate an exceptional commitment to preventing human trafficking and helping victims.

These individuals include NGO workers, lawmakers, government officials, survivors of human trafficking, and concerned citizens.

Tariqul has been serving as the Bangladesh representative of the UK-based NGO, Justice & Care, since 2017, where he currently serves as country director.

Citing Tariqul's role, the report said he is a tireless advocate for victims of human trafficking whose work has helped increase the Bangladesh government’s capacity to investigate and prosecute traffickers.

He has led anti-trafficking organisations that have facilitated assistance to more than 2,000 trafficking victims, it added.

Tariqul has worked diligently with victims of human trafficking to either provide or connect them to the services they need in many of these cases.

According to the report, Tariqul has also supported the government's anti-trafficking efforts to achieve measurable progress in key areas, including those that address recommendations in the 2021 TIP report.

"For example, he has organised cross-border consultations between Bangladesh and India to increase collaboration on victim repatriation efforts,” reads the report.

Additionally, his close working relationship with the Bangladesh Ministry of Home Affairs helped facilitate a strong partnership between the public and private sector, including by helping the ministry draft its National Plan of Action (2018-2022) to combat human trafficking," reads the report.

"Tariqul’s trusted advice, authentic perspective, and frontline experiences make him a leader and respected voice in shaping Bangladesh's response to trafficking", it added.

Tariqul, in his speech, said: "It’s an honour to be part of a small network of individuals who have been recognised in the fight against human trafficking. But of course, I know the survivors are the real heroes.”

“The TIP Report Heroes give us hope.  The network of heroes is a reminder of the power each of us has to respond to the growing issues of human trafficking,” he added.