The Republic of Moldova is a country of origin of victims of trafficking (VoTs), who are exploited within Moldovan borders or abroad. The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), the Middle East, the EU, and, in particular, countries in Central and Southern Europe are the main countries of destination for VoTs. Women and girls are the most affected by the trafficking phenomenon, especially being exploited sexually.  Since 2014, a sharp increase in the share of male victims has been registered. Male victims are mainly trafficked for the purpose of labour exploitation.

Since 2000 in response to this situation, IOM Moldova has been providing assistance and protection, helping more than 3,400 victims of trafficking in overcoming the effects from being exploited. IOM Moldova has also improved life conditions of more than 9,500 potential victims.

The main objectives of the Prevention & Protection Programme are to prevent trafficking in persons and to protect the victims, while offering them options of safe and sustainable rehabilitation and reintegration. Our broad range of activities is implemented on both banks of the Nistru River in partnership with governmental institutions, NGOs and international organizations and includes:

  • Support and expertise to institutional partners for counter-trafficking policy shaping, implementation and coordination;
  • Provision of assistance and protection to victims and potential victims of trafficking, including assistance for return, rehabilitation and reintegration, in coordination and cooperation with the National Referral System (NSR) for assistance and protection of victims and potential victims of trafficking;
  • Provision of technical assistance and expertise in building the capacities of law enforcement agencies in the field of investigation and prosecution of trafficking.

Our approach is based on three principles that govern all our counter-trafficking activities:

  1. Respect for human rights;
  2. Primacy of the physical, mental and social well-being of the individual and his or her community;
  3. Focus on sustainability through institutional capacity building of governments and civil society.