Trafficking in persons continues to take place on a global scale in a context of impunity

by zoejardiniere

14.12.2012 The UNODC Global Report on Trafficking in Persons 2012, published this week, highlights that significant impunity remains with regard to the crime of trafficking in persons.

Although 134 countries worldwide have criminalized trafficking, making it a specific offence in line with the Trafficking in Persons Protocol, the number of convictions for trafficking in persons remains generally very low. Between 5,500 and 7,000 traffickers were convicted per year between 2007 and 2010 in the 132 countries covered by the report. Notably, 16 per cent of the countries covered by the report, did not record a single conviction between 2007 and 2010; and 23 per cent of the countries recorded a very low number of convictions (between 1 and 10 convictions per year).

Trafficking in persons is a global crime affecting nearly all countries in every region of the world. Between 2007 and 2010, victims of 136 different nationalities were detected in 118 countries across the world. Women and girls together account for about 75 per cent of trafficking victims, and 27 per cent of all victims detected are children.

58% of victims are trafficked for sexual exploitation whereas labour exploitation accounts for 36%, to which can be added forced begging, removal of organs and those who are victims of a combination of these.

In its Counter Trafficking & Assistance to Vulnerable Migrants Report for activities in 2011, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) notes that Brazil, Bulgaria, China, India, Nigeria, Moldova, Pakistan, Romania, Russia and Ukraine are the main countries of origin of the victims of trafficking to the European Economic Area (EEA) – the EU27 plus Iceland, Norway and Switzerland. However, countries that traditionally have been considered as solely countries of destination, such as, for example, the United Kingdom, have also identified victims of trafficking who are nationals of the country in-which they are exploited.

Irregular migrants, unaccompanied migrant children and individuals from ethnic minorities such as Roma people are among the most vulnerable to human trafficking.

According to the ILO, in the last ten years an estimated 9 million people have been subjected to trafficking.