Monday, 18 January 2021

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Child Trafficking and Labour Trafficking Cases Rising: IOM

IOMSwitzerland - Child victims of human trafficking helped by IOM increased to 2,040 in 2011, up 27 per cent from 1,565 in 2008, according to new IOM data.

It shows that the number of adult victims referred to 89 IOM missions in 91 countries during the same period rose 13 per cent to 3,404 from 3,012.

While the number of female victims remained stable at 3,415, compared to 3,404 in 2008, the number of male victims rose 27 per cent to 2,040 from 1,656, reflecting growing public recognition of the trafficking of men for the purpose of labour exploitation.

Labour trafficking cases rose 43 per cent to 2,906, up from 2,031 in 2008. In contrast, cases of trafficking for sexual exploitation dropped 19 per cent to 1,507 from 1,866 four years earlier.

International trafficking cases fell 13 per cent to 3,531 in 2011, down from 4,066 in 2008. But domestic cases shot up 140 per cent from 713 in 2008 to 1,708 last year.

The fall in international cases may reflect more efficient immigration and border controls, while the increase in the number of domestic cases may reflect greater public awareness of trafficking and improved domestic law enforcement, according to IOM Head of Counter Trafficking Laurence Hart.

Out of a total of 5,498 victims helped by IOM in 2011, 1,606 were in Europe, 1,049 in South and Central Asia, 984 in the Western Hemisphere, 860 in East Asia and the Pacific, 696 in the Middle East and 303 in Africa, according to IOM 2012 Case Data on Human Trafficking: Global Figures and Trends.

Roughly a third (36 per cent) of cases involved children under the age of 18. Nearly two thirds (62 per cent) of the total were women and a little over a third (37 per cent ) were men.

In Europe, Asia and the Pacific, Central and Southern Asia, women outnumbered men by roughly two to one. In the Middle East, the Western Hemisphere and Africa, the gender gap was less pronounced.

The top ten countries of destination for human trafficking victims helped by IOM in 2011 were the Russian Federation (837), Haiti (658), Yemen (552), Thailand (449), Kazakhstan (265), Afghanistan (170), Indonesia (148), Poland (122), Egypt (103) and Turkey (101).

The top ten countries of origin for victims were Ukraine (835), Haiti (709), Yemen (378), Laos (359), Uzbekistan (292), Cambodia (258), Kyrgyzstan (213), Afghanistan (179), Belarus (141) and Ethiopia (122).

In Europe, IOM Ukraine recorded the most victims assisted with 814 of the total. Belarus recorded 142, Moldova 98 and Germany 69.

In Central and South, Asia Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan topped the totals, accounting for 202, 204 and 199 cases respectively.

In the Western Hemisphere, IOM helped 656 victims in Haiti, 65 in the United States and 49 in the Dominican Republic.

In Asia and the Pacific, Thailand accounted for 260 cases, Laos for 195, Cambodia for 122 and Vietnam for 102.

In the Middle East, IOM offices recorded 513 cases in Yemen and 100 in Egypt. In Africa IOM handled 47 cases in Tanzania, 45 in Uganda, 44 in Ethiopia and 32 in Mali.

IOM provides a wide range of services to help victims of human trafficking, including shelter, medical and legal assistance, vocational training, assisted voluntary return to the country of origin, and reintegration assistance once they return home.

A copy of the report, which was funded by the US State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, can be downloaded from:

Linda Eriksson Baca on human trafficking in the European countries


What is human trafficking?

•    An estimated 2.5 million people are in forced labour (including sexual exploitation) at any given time as a result of trafficking.
•    161 countries are reported to be affected by human trafficking by being a source, transit or destination country.
•    The majority of trafficking victims are between 18 and 24 years of age
•    An estimated 1.2 million children are trafficked each year
•    Many trafficking victims have at least middle-level education
•    In 54% of cases the recruiter was a stranger to the victim, 46% of cases the recruiter was known to victim
•    Sexual exploitation is noted as by far the most commonly identified form of human trafficking (79%) followed by forced labour (18%).
•    Other forms of exploitation are: forced or bonded labour, domestic servitude, formed marriage, organ removal and the exploitation of children in begging, the sex trade and warfare
•    Estimated global annual profits made from the exploitation of all trafficked forced labour are US$ 31.6 billion
•    In 2006, there were only 5,808 prosecutions and 3,160 convictions throughout the world. This means that for every 800 people trafficked, only one person was convicted.
•    In 2011, the European Union adopted a Directive to prevent and combat trafficking in human beings and protect its victims.   


International Labour Organization, Forced Labour Statistics Factsheet (2007)
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Trafficking in Persons: Global Patterns (Vienna, 2006)
International Organization for Migration, Counter-Trafficking Database, 78 Countries, 1999-2006 (1999)
UNICEF, UK Child Trafficking Information Sheet (January 2003)
International Labour Organization, Forced Labour Statistics Factsheet (2007)  
International Organization for Migration, Counter-Trafficking Database, 78 Countries, 1999-2006 (1999)
International Organization for Migration, Counter-Trafficking Database, 78 Countries, 1999-2006 (1999)
Patrick Besler, Forced Labour and Human Trafficking: Estimating the Profits, working paper (Geneva, International
Labour Office, 2005)
US State Department, Trafficking in Persons Report (2007) p.36