Human Traffic Watch

Posts Tagged ‘africa’

African infiltrators use Yemen as by-pass country, say Saudi Arabia

In Human Trafficking on July 7, 2013 at 1:38 pm



Although Saudi Arabia resumed earlier this year the construction of its border-fence to curb the flow of illegal immigration and trades into the kingdom, officials have now revealed that African infiltrators continue to use Yemen as a by-pass country into Saudi Arabia.
The 1400 km border line which Saudi Arabia shares with impoverished and unruly Yemen is essentially rugged and mountainous, a terrain which makes any form of control rather complicated.
According to official reports African migrants walk from east Yemen to the west, across deserts and prairies until they reach al-Tuwal (Jizan province, in Saudi Arabia).
Ever since 2011, when Yemen underwent radical political and institutional changes, smugglers have used a breakdown in security to expand the range of their criminal activities: human trafficking, drug smuggling and arm trafficking.
Beyond the immediate impact such activities are having on Yemen and Saudi Arabia security, non-governmental organizations have been concerned over the rise in human suffering.

Source: Yemen Post

Rwanda: Step-Up Fight Against Human Trafficking, Rwandan Tells UN Summit

In Awareness, Forced Labor, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on May 21, 2013 at 4:10 pm

A Rwandan diplomat at the Rwandan mission at the UN has asked the world body to devise urgent measures to curtail human trafficking as the crime is on the increase.

Jeanne d’Arc Byaje, Rwanda’s deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, on Tuesday, told the General Assembly meeting on the Appraisal of the UN Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons that the stakes in human trafficking are too high to be ignored any further.

“Since 2009, 130 cases of human trafficking have been recorded in Rwanda. These include cases of victims who have been recovered or intercepted and others that are still in the hands of criminals,” Byaje said.

She said the crime is exacerbated by poverty, unemployment, inequality, social exclusion, marginalisation and racism.

Source: allAfrica

Woman escapes modern-day slavery in a home near the nation’s capital

In Child Labor, Debt Bondage among Migrant Workers, Forced Labor, Human Trafficking, Involuntary Domestic Servitude on April 22, 2013 at 2:36 pm

A few years ago, a kind lady at church suggested she make a run for it. “Run, run,” she told her. “Don’t shower, don’t change your clothes, don’t take anything.” Just run into the dark of early morning, through the nice, American neighborhood, when all are still asleep. And the kind lady from church picked her up at the rendezvous point.

Esther will celebrate her emancipation day Tuesday. But to be honest, she celebrates it every day.

“Now, I have peace. Peace in my heart. It is happy. I am happy,” Esther told me, asking that I not reveal her full name or native country because she still fears her captors.

Esther is one of thousands of survivors of human trafficking in the United States.

Source: Washington Post

Africa: USAID Asks Students for Ideas to Combat Human Trafficking

In Human Trafficking on October 20, 2012 at 2:57 pm

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is asking students to come up with new and innovative ways to end modern slavery.

USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah announced the Campus Challenge to Counter Trafficking in Persons (C-TIP) on October 11 at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.

Across three phases and through the USAID website, the C-TIP Campus Challenge is designed to increase global awareness about trafficking, inspire activism among students and scholars at colleges and universities worldwide and generate new, creative ideas and solutions to stop human trafficking and help the 20.9 million people around the world are enslaved in sex or labor exploitation, USAID said.

Source: All Africa

Angola: Human Trafficking More Noticeable in the Country

In Awareness, Human Trafficking on June 18, 2012 at 9:20 am

The trafficking of human beings has been more evident in Angola, said Friday in Luanda the director of the Criminal Investigation National Department (DNIC), chief commissioner Eugénio Pedro Alexandre.

Speaking at a lecture on this phenomenon, in the ambit of the celebrations of the 33rd anniversary of the Ministry of the Interior, to be marked on 22 June, the police chief said the authorities have been noticing the growth of exploited workers in sectors like agriculture and coal exploration.

He considered the trafficking of human beings a threat to national security, since it affects a country’s economic, social and political stability.

Source: All Africa

Spotlight On Human Trafficking As 4,000 Young Footballers Are Shipped To Europe

In Child Trafficking, Human Trafficking on March 30, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Football is being used as a vehicle for human trafficking, with at least 4,000 young players illegally shipped from Africa to Europe to pursue dreams of a career in the game.

Foot Solidaire, a French organisation that works to protect young footballers from exploitation, said it is dealing with at least 20 new cases each week and has called on FIFA to act.

Parents are spending thousands of pounds to send their sons to Europe in the hope they will earn lucrative contracts, but the teenagers are then abandoned on the street.

In a special TV report shown on Sky Sports News [click here for more], a FIFA-licensed agent in Cameroon was exposed offering to sell 14-and 15-year-olds for £25,000.

Source: Cameroon Online

Israeli charged with trafficking African migrants

In Human Trafficking on March 29, 2012 at 2:08 pm

An Israeli man has been charged with participation in a human trafficking ring that captured and tortured African migrants in Egypt’s neighboring Sinai desert, according to an indictment released Sunday.

The indictment said the accused – a Bedouin from the Negev desert in southern Israel – extorted tens of thousands of dollars from Eritrean and Sudanese migrants in Israel whose relatives were being held by smugglers in Sinai.

The charge sheet said that over the past nine months, the suspect collected ransoms of up to $40,000 each for dozens of captives held by nomadic Bedouin tribesmen in the Sinai.

The Bedouin were supposed to smuggle them over the border into Israel. According to the indictment, the traffickers threatened to kill the captives or remove their kidneys for sale if their relatives in Israel didn’t pay up.

Some 50,000 Africans have entered Israel in recent years, fleeing conflict and poverty in search of safety and jobs in the relatively prosperous Jewish state. They need the smugglers’ help to navigate the rugged Sinai desert, reach Israel’s border and sneak across.

Source: Seattle Times

Find chocolate with a conscience

In Awareness, Child Labor, Child Trafficking, Forced Labor, Human Trafficking on February 13, 2012 at 9:15 am

The bright red cards and red boxes of candy promoting Valentine’s Day romance are everywhere.

But there’s a dark secret underlying this fun holiday that’s beginning to see daylight.

Much of the chocolate sold by major chocolate manufacturers is produced through child trafficking and slave labor, working mostly under horrendous conditions for extremely poor wages.

In 2001 the child slave labor issue in the chocolate industry was brought to light through a series of investigative articles by Knight Ridder newspapers. Reporters profiled young boys who were tricked into slavery or sold as slaves to Ivory Coast cocoa farmers. The Ivory Coast, on the southern coast of West Africa, supplies more than 43 percent of the world’s cocoa beans. The more than 600,000 cocoa farms in Ivory Coast account for one-third of that nation’s total economy.

The details are stark and disturbing.

(Debra Atlas for


In Child Labor, Child Trafficking, Forced Labor, Human Trafficking on February 6, 2012 at 8:37 am

The global cocoa industry often traffics children to work as slaves. According toUNICEF, in West Africa 200,000 children are living in conditions of forced labor and slavery on cocoa farms.  One company that has been under heavy pressure to remove child labor from their supply chains is U.S. chocolate leader Hershey; however, the years of pressure by consumers and the media, not to mention the industry itself, have largely passed with little impact.  The Hershey Company has been aware that their products are tainted by slavery and child labor since at least 2001, when along with the other major chocolate companies, Hershey made a commitment to end child and forced labor in their cocoa supply chains.  In September 2001, chocolate and cocoa industry representatives signed the Harkin Engel Protocol, developed by Senator Tom Harkin and Representative Eliot Engel, in an effort to eliminate child labor in the industry. The protocol has a six-point approach to solve the problem, including a time sensitive process to establish credibility and eliminate the use of child slavery. The protocol was signed by the industry’s large cocoa producing companies and set forth an action plan to eliminate the worst forms of child labor and forced labor from cocoa farms worldwide by 2005.

However, Hershey’s has continued to produce their products undaunted by the knowledge that their profits come with a high human cost. They continue to source cocoa from the Ivory Coast, which according to the International Labor Organization (ILO), produces 43% of the worlds cocoa, without ensuring that child labor exploitation does not occur in the production of the cocoa they use.  However, it seems that 2012 is the year Hershey will finally opened their eyes and fall to pressure, mostly thanks to the International Labor Rights Forum and the public campaign “Raise The Bar“, aimed directly at the company’s failure to act.  The ILRF contacted Hershey to let them know of their plans to air an ad about Hershey’s child labor issues on a jumbo-tron at the Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis for the Super Bowl.  Suddenly Hershey’s was ready to speak up and issued a statement that, by the end of 2012, they pledged to use onlyRainforest Alliance certified cocoa for its  Bliss chocolate line. Rainforest Alliance Certified farms have three pillars of sustainability: environmental protection, social equity and economic viability.  Hershey’s also stated they they plan to invest $10 million in West Africa, to encourage economic initiatives and to reduce child labor and improve cocoa supply (Huffington Post).  While this is great news, it is not yet time to celebrate, as it is a small step in the long road to freedom for millions of children victimized by child labor.

(Aid Netherlands)

Protection for child labourers from Burkina Faso and other West African countries

In Child Trafficking, Human Trafficking on February 1, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Child labour remains common in West Africa, where poverty increasingly results in the movement of children from poorer nations to work in wealthier ones.

Children move from countries such as MaliNiger and Burkina Faso, to oil-rich nations such as Gabon and Nigeria, or places where commercial agriculture demands field labourers, such as Ivory Coast. In a recent article on such movements, Gabon’s social affairs director-general told the news agency IRIN that Gabon was considered a kind of El Dorado (a mythical place of immense wealth), attracting “a lot of West African immigrants who traffic children”.

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