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The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children

In the early years of the 21st Century, 2000 to 2025                              

Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

Jordan is a small Arab country with insufficient supplies of water, oil, and other natural resources. Poverty, unemployment, and inflation are fundamental problems, but King Abdallah II, since assuming the throne in 1999, has undertaken some broad economic reforms in a long-term effort to improve living standards.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]


CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Jordan.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated, misleading or even false.   No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of child prostitution are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring how children got started, how they survive, and how some succeed in leaving.  Perhaps your paper could focus on runaways and the abuse that led to their leaving.  Other factors of interest might be poverty, rejection, drug dependence, coercion, violence, addiction, hunger, neglect, etc.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the manipulative and dangerous adults who control this activity.  There is a lot to the subject of Child Prostitution.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.


Commercial sexual exploitation of children - Middle East/North Africa region

based on the situation analysis written by Dr Najat M’jid for the Arab-African Forum against Commercial Sexual Exploitation, Rabat, Morocco, 24-26 October 2001

[accessed 16 February 2011]

These countries also have in common, however, a number of constraints that have hindered preparation of national plans of action. In all the countries of the region, there is cultural resistance to addressing the problem because the subject is largely taboo.  Often the issue is dealt with more generally under headings such as ‘violence’ and ‘trauma’.  This means that there has been no regional consensus on defining CSEC in law; in some countries, for example, it is looked upon as an indecent act, in others as rape, although in all 20 countries there is some section of the penal code that can be invoked against sexual abuse and exploitation.


*** ARCHIVES ***

ECPAT Country Monitoring Report [PDF]

Linda Fouad, ECPAT International, 2016

[accessed 1 September 2020]

Desk review of existing information on the sexual exploitation of children (SEC) in Jordan. The report looks at protection mechanisms, responses, preventive measures, child and youth participation in fighting SEC, and makes recommendations for action against SEC.

Human Rights Reports » 2019 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 10, 2020

[accessed 1 September 2020]

SEXUAL EXPLOITATION OF CHILDREN - The law stipulates a penalty for the commercial exploitation of children of six months’ to three years’ imprisonment. The law prohibits the distribution of pornography involving persons younger than age 18. The law does not specifically prohibit the possession of child pornography without an intention to sell or distribute. The law penalizes those who use the internet to post or distribute child pornography. The minimum age of consensual sex is 18, although sexual relations between minors whose marriages the courts approved are legal.

The Department of Labor’s 2004 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

U.S. Dept of Labor Bureau of International Labor Affairs, 2005

[accessed 16 February 2011]

Note:: Also check out this country’s report in the more recent edition DOL Worst Forms of Child Labor

CHILD LABOR LAWS AND ENFORCEMENT - A Jordanian law specifically prohibits trafficking in children, and there is no indication that children were trafficked, to, from, or within the country.  Inducing a girl under the age of 20 to engage in prostitution and inducing any child under the age of 15 to commit sodomy are prohibited.  Sanctions for these offenses include imprisonment for up to 5 years and a fine.

Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) [DOC]

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, September 29, 2006$FILE/G0645032.doc

[accessed 16 February 2011]

[92] The Committee regrets the lack of data on the extent and magnitude of commercial sexual exploitation of children and trafficking in children for exploitative purposes in the State party. It also regrets the insufficient legal protection of boys below the age of 18 against commercial sexual exploitation and the absence of a specific legal framework to protect children from trafficking.

Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 2 June 2000

[accessed 28 February 2011]

[61] The Committee is concerned at the insufficient data on and awareness of the phenomenon of commercial sexual exploitation of children in Jordan, and the absence of a comprehensive and integrated approach to prevent and combat it.

Five Years After Stockholm [PDF]

ECPAT: Fifth Report on implementation of the Agenda for Action

ECPAT International, November 2001

[accessed 13 September 2011]

[B] COUNTRY UPDATES – JORDANIn regard to child trafficking, child prostitution and child pornography, available national statistics do not indicate the existence of these problems in Jordanian society.  Nevertheless, a review of existing studies and police records shows that children of both sexes have been exposed to sexual abuse and exploitation by family members as well as by strangers. In response, draft legislation in Jordan contains articles to protect children from pornography, sexual exploitation and trafficking. A National Commission for Human Rights has also been formed to support legislative changes and the teaching of human rights to the Jordanian public.

ECPAT: CSEC Overview – Jordan

ECPAT International

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 14 September 2011]

There is still insufficient data and little awareness of the issue of commercial sexual exploitation of children in Jordan. Traditionally, the Jordanian position on the issue has been that there is no CSEC in Jordanian society and hence no need to develop a specific National Plan of Action. In recent years, media attention has increasingly focused on issues such as honor killings and child labor, but CSEC remains out of the spotlight.

5.1 Middle East - State of CSEC/ Attitudes toward CSEC [PDF]

ECPAT International, Looking Back, Thinking Forward, 1999-2000

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 5 June 2011]

While Israel, Jordan and Lebanon indicate a tacit willingness to address the issue, the majority of the countries in the region have not conducted research and deny the possibility that children are being sexually exploited for commercial purposes.  Open discussions of sex related issues are regarded as a social taboo thus further explaining the lack of research and acknowledgement of CSEC.  While the extent of child prostitution in the Middle East region is unknown, anecdotal evidence indicates that there is a large problem in selected areas of the region.




ECPAT Global Monitoring Report on the status of action against commercial exploitation of children - JORDAN [PDF]

ECPAT International, 2008

[accessed 5 June 2011]

A key obstacle to fighting the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) in Jordan is the lack of information on its scope and various manifestations, and the absence of statistics on related crimes. The issue of child abuse in general has only recently started to be discussed in the region, and the commercial sexual exploitation of children is yet to be discussed in more specific terms. CSEC is invariably addressed as ‘child abuse’, within families in particular, which fails to consider all the dimensions of the problem and thus foster effective counteraction. The Committee on the Rights of the Child has noted that data is still lacking or insufficient in some areas related to child welfare, including on sexual exploitation of children. Available national statistics do not categorise cases of child trafficking, child prostitution and child pornography, and no comprehensive research has been conducted on these phenomena. As such, there is very little evidence that these forms of exploitation are occurring in the country. Nevertheless, a review of existing studies and police records shows that children of both sexes have been exposed to sexual exploitation, by family members as well as by strangers. Informal reports on trafficking and child prostitution also indicate their incidence.

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