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Top 15 Cities With Highest Human Trafficking in the World

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While the majority of the population lives in oblivion with regards to the issue of human trafficking, residents of the top 15 cities with highest human trafficking in the world most certainly do not.

History teaches us that slavery was abolished centuries ago. However, it is still present only under a different name – human trafficking. In 2010, the UN General Assembly adopted the global plan of action to combat trafficking in persons. A few years later, the same body designated 30th of July as the World Day against Trafficking in Persons. While there are international mechanisms to combat human trafficking and with the promotion of human rights globally, there is a higher recognition of the issue as such, failure of some countries to prioritize change of legislation and to resort to all means available in order to protect better its citizens has resulted in these 15 cities having the highest human trafficking scope. In case you are interested which are the worst states for human trafficking in America, check out our list of 11 worst states for human trafficking in America.

As indicated on the UN Office on Drugs and Crimes, human trafficking represents a grave violation of human rights, affecting men, women, and children. The UN Global Report on Trafficking in Persons for 2016 estimates that “children make up almost a third of all human trafficking victims worldwide. Additionally, women and girls comprise 71 percent of human trafficking victims.” Furthermore, it recognizes sexual exploitation as the most common form of human trafficking, followed by forced labor. According to the report, other forms of exploitation such as domestic servitude, forced labor, organ removal, exploitation of children for begging, sex trade, and warfare, are “under-reported.”

As stated on the UN official website, “every country in the world is affected by human trafficking, whether as a country of origin, transit, or destination for victims.” Human trafficking in its definition implies the act that includes multiple steps, “recruitment, transportation, harboring or receipt of persons,” taking place in more than one location. For this reason, that is, the very nature of human trafficking, it is impossible to rank the cities with highest human trafficking in the world. If we take the nature of human trafficking into account and the means countries use to tackle the issue, it is very likely that one (or more) of the steps in human trafficking process will occur in capital cities. To this, we should add the hectic life that characterizes larger cities, which makes it easier for illegal activities to go under the radar. This might make bigger cities more appealing for those who commit trafficking, organize it and direct it. Moreover, if not the final destination, capital cities are often transit points.

Therefore, what we consider to be the cities with the highest human trafficking are the capitals of the countries which are on tier 2 watch list. The US Department of State releases a global report on trafficking in persons every year. Countries on Tier 2 Watch List have “the absolute number of victims of severe forms of trafficking” which is “very significant or is significantly increasing.” Furthermore, these countries fail “to provide evidence of increasing efforts to combat severe forms of trafficking in persons.”

When creating the list of top 15 cities with highest human trafficking in the world, we considered the ranking of countries in the report published by the US Department of State for 2016. Moreover, we have considered the results presented in the UN Global Report on Trafficking in Persons for the same year. Both reports contain country profiles, and these are what we looked into when we created the list of 15 cities with the highest human trafficking scope in the world. We also referred to some local news sources which published relevant news articles. Now, let’s see our list of top 15 cities with highest human trafficking in the world.

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