Nearly 36 Million People are Slaves, Qatar in Focus: Global Index

Nearly 36 Million People are Slaves, Qatar in Focus: Global Index

By Katie Nguyen | Reuters LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Almost 36 million people are living as slaves across the globe with an index on Monday listing Mauritania, Uzbekistan, Haiti, Qatar and India as the nations where modern-day slavery is most prevalent. The Walk Free Foundation, an Australian-based human rights group, estimated in its inaugural slavery index last year that 29.8 million people were born into servitude, trafficked for sex work, trapped in debt bondage or exploited for forced labour.
Nearly 36 Million People are Slaves

Image credit: Kwamikagami [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Releasing its second annual index, Walk Free increased its estimate of the number of slaves to 35.8 million, saying this was due to better data collection and slavery being uncovered in areas where it had not been found previously. For the second year, the index of 167 countries found India had by far the greatest number of slaves. Up to 14.3 million people in its population of 1.25 billion were victims of slavery, ranging from prostitution to bonded labour. Mauritania was again the country where slavery was most prevalent by head of population while Qatar, host of the 2022 World Cup, rose up the rank from 96th place to be listed as the fourth worst country by percentage of the population. "From children denied an education by being forced to work or marry early, to men unable to leave their work because of crushing debts they owe to recruitment agents, to women and girls exploited as unpaid, abused domestic workers, modern slavery has many faces," the report said. "It still exists today, in every country - modern slavery affects us all." The index defines slavery as the control or possession of people in such a way as to deprive them of their freedom with the intention of exploiting them for profit or sex, usually through violence, coercion or deception. Read more

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