Document Type

International Studies and Languages


This paper analyzes why the UN’s efforts against the sex trafficking of smuggled migrants, specifically regarding the Palermo and Smuggling Protocols, have been inadequate in preventing migrant smuggling. It concludes that the crime-based focus on prosecution overshadows prevention of the crime and protection of the victims, and that a human rights approach addressing the vulnerability of smuggled migrants would be more effective in reducing migrant smuggling long-term. Proposed solutions include decreasing both the “push” and “pull” factors of migration by ratifying existing legislation regarding basic human rights, implementing national policies that increase migrant rights in destination countries, and shifting further conversations about migrant smuggling to include bottom-up development approaches.