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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2005 > November
Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
November 3, 2005

United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (TOC)


  • On October 19, 2005, President Bush signed the instrument of ratification for the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (TOC), its supplementary Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, and its Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air. Secretary Rice countersigned the instrument of ratification on October 25, 2005.
  • The United States deposited the instrument of ratification at United Nations headquarters in New York on November 3, 2005, and will become an official party to the Convention and these two Protocols 30 days thereafter.
  • The TOC entered into force on September 29, 2003, after 40 countries became party to the treaty. As of October 26, 2005, there are 147 Signatories and 112 Parties to the TOC. The trafficking in persons protocol entered into force on December 25, 2003, and has 117 Signatories and 93 Parties. The migrant smuggling protocol entered into force on January 28, 2004, and currently has 112 Signatories and 82 Parties.
  • The TOC represents the first legally binding multilateral instrument that specifically targets transnational organized crime. It requires parties that have not already done so to adopt legislation criminalizing certain conduct typically associated with organized crime and provides a framework for international cooperation among Parties to assist each other in investigating and prosecuting transnational organized crime.
  • The successful negotiation and widespread ratification of the TOC represent the global community’s resolve to combat transnational organized crime as a serious worldwide threat.


  • The United States actively participated in the TOC negotiations along with more than 120 countries. The TOC and its supplementary protocols on trafficking in persons and migrant smuggling were adopted by the General Assembly November 15, 2000 (Resolution 55/25).
  • A State must become a party to the TOC in order to become a party to its Protocols.


Released on November 3, 2005

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