This data story presents key characteristics from the Global Victim Dataset of approximately 3,000 victims exploited in Africa. Most data is shown at the regional level, and there are some key statistics for the ten countries within the region where the largest amount of data is present. The subset mainly comprises data from IOM's counter trafficking activities, and therefore some data is largely reflective of IOM's programming within the region. Regions and sub-regions are defined according to the official UN classification.

Type of exploitation all victims

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Over half of victims exploited in Africa are victims of trafficking for labour exploitation, while around a fifth are victims of trafficking for sexual exploitation.

Adults and children

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Notably, over half of the victims identified as being exploited in Africa are children. This is in contrast to the Global Dataset at large, of which only one fifth of victims are children.

Gender of victims

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Among identified cases of victims exploited within the region of Africa, there is a nearly equal proportion of male and female victims.

Region of origin of victims

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Over 80% of identified victims exploited in Africa have citizenship of an African country, representing the intra-regional nature of trafficking.

Gender and age of victims

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Whilst within Africa the proportion of male and female victims is almost equal, the genders are not equally distributed across age categories. There is a higher proportion of boys (children under 18) in each of the children's age categories. The reverse is true for categories between 19 and 48 years of age, with higher proportions of females. Men are more proportionately represented among the over 60s.

Means of control used on adults and children

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Traffickers use many means of controlling their victims, and each victim can be subject to several means of control during the course of their trafficking experience. Adult victims exploited in Africa tend to be controlled much more through debt bondage, restrictions on movement, and restrictions on necessities and medical care than children. Children are controlled proportionately more through false promises and threats.

Marital status

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Over 80% of victims exploited in Africa are single. This may be a reflection of the high number of children among identified victims.

Work sector for victims of trafficking for labour exploitation

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Available data shows victims largely trafficked into begging or domestic work. While this may be reflective of general trends, it should be noted that data here largely reflect IOM's programming and there may be a high number of individuals trafficked into certain sectors in certain places.

Education level

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Over 50% of victims exploited in Africa have completed primary or elementary education, but beyond that very few have completed any higher level of education. Again, this may be reflective of the age of identified victims, rather than victims exploited in Africa in general.

Recruiter relationship

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The majority of identified victims were not recruited by someone close to them.