A Council of Europe Convention to combat trafficking in human organs

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Council of Europe | July 9, 2014

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Strasbourg – The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe has adopted an international convention to make trafficking in human organs for transplant a criminal offence, to protect victims and to facilitate cooperation at national and international levels in order to prosecute more effectively those responsible for trafficking.

The Convention calls on governments to establish as a criminal offence the illegal removal of human organs from living or deceased donors:

- where the removal is performed without the free, informed and specific consent of the living or deceased donor, or, in the case of the deceased donor, without the removal being authorised under its domestic law;
- where, in exchange for the removal of organs, the living donor, or a third party, receives a financial gain or comparable advantage;
- where in exchange for the removal of organs from a deceased donor, a third party receives a financial gain or comparable advantage.

The Convention also provides protection measures and compensation for victims as well as prevention measures to ensure transparency and equitable access to transplantation services...

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