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Media has an important role to play in curbing human trafficking: Haraldur Johannessen 

Media has an important role to play in curbing human trafficking: Haraldur Johannessen

Haraldur Johannessen, the National Police Commissioner of Iceland Police was recently in Oslo to take part in the Nordic Police Conference. Editor-in-Chief of the Oslo Times International News Network, Hatef Mokhtar, caught up with Johannessen along the sidelines of the Conference and held discussions on range of issues while particularly focusing on cyber crime and human trafficking.

Here are excerpts from this interesting conversation:

Can you tell us a little about the Nordic Police Conference, and what kind of issues is it focused on?
This is a conference hosted by the Norwegian National Director of Police for Nordic countries on cyber crime. Presentations and discussions are on various aspects of cyber crime are held along with discussing on ways to prevent and curb the growing misuse of the internet.

Do you think cyber crime is a big issue, today?
I think cyber crime is one of the biggest issues we are facing in terms of criminality, today. Just last week I had attended Interpol’s general assembly in Monaco, and during the assembly we were briefed about why cyber crime is one of the biggest threats we face today. And, so yeah, cybercrime is ranked really high in the criminality ranking scale, globally. This is why, the Interpol and Europol have both been working on how to approach cyber crime for the past couple of years as it is becoming a growing concern for everyone across the globe.

What do you have to say about the alarming increase in the rate of human trafficking across Europe?
I think human trafficking is a global problem and it is a horrible situation for all of humankind.

How would you rank it in terms of criminality?
If we were to rank it on a scale from 1-3 than it would have ranked it the highest as it is proving a challenge to the police department worldwide. And , I think it is an issue that we all need to address and combat. This is not just a criminal issue for the police to handle it is also a human rights issue, so communities too have an important role to play in curbing this problem.

Where do you see Iceland today in terms of peace, stability, human rights, freedom of speech and freedom of expression?
icelandAll these things that you have mentioned like- human rights, freedom of speech- help in securing society and these need to be the fundamental issues that are maintained not just by all Nordic societies, but also by the rest of the world. And, in Iceland we stringently practice these fundamental values.

Do you have a message to give to our worldwide readers in terms of graveness of human trafficking?
Like I said earlier, human trafficking is one of the major challenges we face in combating crime today. It is an issue that we need to combat together as a global society.

How do we combat trafficking?
Through awareness, I think everyone should be made aware of this horrendous situation. In my opinion the media should play a very strong and positive role in preventing this crime.

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  • The views and opinions published in this interview belong solely to the interviewee do not represent any view or opinion held by The Oslo Times International News Network. The Oslo Times practices, defends and promotes freedom of expression. The published interview is in accordance with Article 19 of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights.