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Human Trafficking
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The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children

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

State of Mongolia

Economic activity in Mongolia has traditionally been based on herding and agriculture. Mongolia has extensive mineral deposits. Copper, coal, gold, molybdenum, fluorspar, uranium, tin, and tungsten account for a large part of industrial production and foreign direct investment.

Severe winters and summer droughts in 2000-02 resulted in massive livestock die-off and zero or negative GDP growth. This was compounded by falling prices for Mongolia's primary sector exports and widespread opposition to privatization.

Description: Mongolia

Until late 2008 Mongolia experienced a soaring inflation rate, with year-to-year inflation reaching nearly 40% - the highest inflation rate in over a decade.  [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 Mongolia.  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.


Traffickers profit from vulnerability of street children in Mongolia

Daryhand Bayar, United Nations Children's Fund UNICEF Mongolia, March 7, 2006

This article has been archived by World Street Children News and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 21 June 2011]

According to an assessment by UNICEF of street and unsupervised children, migrant girls who live and/or work on the streets are often recruited into prostitution. Research by CHRD indicates that highly organized criminals take advantage of the girls’ vulnerability on the streets and force them down this path in order to profit from their exploitation. The organizers are not necessarily unknown to the girls – they are often family members or other girls who have previously engaged in prostitution. The rate of prostitution is highest in Ulaanbaatar, but it is also prevalent in provinces near Mongolia’s borders. The implication is that children forced into prostitution in these provinces may also become victims of cross-border trafficking.


*** ARCHIVES ***

ECPAT Country Monitoring Report [PDF]

Veyoma Hevamanage, ECPAT International, 2011

[accessed 3 September 2020]

Desk review of existing information on the sexual exploitation of children (SEC) in Mongolia. 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 3 September 2020]

SEXUAL EXPLOITATION OF CHILDREN - Although illegal, the commercial sexual exploitation of children younger than 18 was a problem. According to NGOs there were instances in which teenage girls were kidnapped, coerced, or deceived and forced to work in prostitution. The minimum age for consensual sex is 16. Violators of the statutory rape law (defined as sexual intercourse with a person younger than 16 not involving physical violence or the threat of violence) are subject to a maximum penalty of five years in prison. Those who engaged children in prostitution or sexual exploitation are subject to a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, or life imprisonment if aggravating circumstances are present. Under the criminal code, the maximum penalty for engaging children in pornography is eight years’ imprisonment. The NCAV reported it had received 16 complaints related to child sexual abuse and domestic violence as of November 1. Ten of the cases were referred to the courts, five were referred to the FCYDA, and one case was pending.

2018 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking, Bureau of International Labor Affairs, US Dept of Labor, 2019

[accessed 3 September 2020]

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

[page 808]

Mongolian children are generally trafficked internally for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation in saunas, bars, hotels, karaoke clubs, and massage parlors. (3,7,9,17,21)

In 2018, there were 15 separate trainings focused on trafficking in persons, preventing the sexual exploitation of children, improving investigative tactics, and enhancing the provision of support services. (9,39)

Police officers reported a general lack of knowledge and training on how to apply criminal trafficking laws to cases of commercial sexual exploitation of children. Authorities use provisions of the Criminal Code, which carry less stringent penalties when boys are the victims of human trafficking due to the misconception among many government officials that only girls can be victims of human trafficking. (4) As a result, many cases that could have been prosecuted under the human trafficking article of the Criminal Code were instead prosecuted under related articles of the Criminal Code that carry lighter penalties. (4,19,47)

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

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 3 June 2005

[accessed 21 February 2011]

[64] The Committee is deeply concerned at the increasing number of children engaged in prostitution. While noting that trafficking in children is a relatively new human rights problem in Mongolia, the Committee is concerned about certain risk factors, including persisting poverty, the high rate of unemployment, difficult family circumstances leading to run-away from home and a growth in tourism, which may and often does increase sexual exploitation and trafficking in children.

Street Children Remain Neglected

Damien Dawson, 06 April 2007

This article has been archived by World Street Children News and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 21 June 2011]

Although homeless and orphans, these children consider themselves lucky. "Some children are sent out to beg by their parents who use the money they get to buy alcohol, even if they’re not homeless," Nara tells me. These children do not want their names or their faces to be seen in Mongolian newspapers because of the shame this will bring to their families. They at least are trying to retain their national pride. Others that they consider less fortunate than themselves are those forced into selling themselves on the streets, while their pimps are protected by corrupt policemen, who in some cases control the prostitutes themselves.

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 – MONGOLIAThe Mongolian Centre for Child Rights has said that the main obstacle to implementing the Agenda for Action is the lack of reliable data on both the number of street children and the number of CSEC victims. Programs implemented by the government and NGOs in recent years have focused on awareness raising and the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases including HIV/AIDS.

Report by Special Rapporteur [DOC]

UN Economic and Social Council Commission on Human Rights, Fifty-ninth session, 6 January 2003$FILE/G0310090.doc

[accessed 21 June 2011]

[55] The new Criminal Code approved in January 2002 makes the sale and trafficking of children a criminal offence and provides for 5-10 years’ imprisonment where the crime is committed for remuneration for sexual exploitation involving minors.  The General Police Department reported 11 cases of arrests for using children in prostitution in 2001, and 5 cases in 2002.  Concerning the use of children in pornography, the police reported 14 cases in 2001 and 8 cases in 2002.

NGOs' Perspectives of Children's Rights in Mongolia

Save the Children UK Programme in Mongolia, The UB Post, January 5, 2005

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

[accessed 21 June 2011]

Alarmingly, child prostitution cases are increasing drastically.  Most girls involved are former victims of sexual abuse themselves.  Mongolia has been promoting an open policy and many tourists and business people visit the country.  There is no guarantee that child sex will not be developed in the country.

Prevent Under-age Prostitution with Skill Building

The World Bank, Competition: 2003 Global DM: Services for the Poor, Project No. 2003-0283

[accessed 21 June 2011]

[accessed 13 November 2016]

RATIONALE - Mongolia's transition to a market economy has experienced dramatic societal changes. Fleeing abuse, an alcoholic parent, or neglect, many girls run away from home and end up the streets, only to encounter crime, violence and exploitation. Girls living on the street are especially vulnerable to unwanted sexual relations, pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Moreover, they are often forced into prostitution. Prostitution is not tolerated in Mongolian society, and national legislation prohibits it. However, the problem persists.

The Crime Of Trafficking Of Women And Children In Mongolia: The Current Situation [PDF]

G.Urantsooj, L.Ariunchimeg, & D.Tsend-Auysh, Centre for Human Rights and Development CHRD,  and  P.Oyunchimeg, Centre for Human Rights and Development NHRCM, Ulaanbaatar, November 2002

[accessed 13 Aug  2013]

FOREWORD - The rate of trafficking in women and children all over the world has increased and Mongolia has become involved in trafficking in recent years, as evidenced by the Maksim case in which the court found two Mongolian girls had been trafficked to Yugoslavia and forced to engage in prostitution. There has also been an increase in newspaper advertisements on ways to obtain highly paid jobs abroad as well as articles on the trafficking of Mongolian girls abroad.

The Dark Side of Casino Lights

[access information unavailable]

Bolor said she hopes the government will take measures against prostitution and to protect girls who live on the street.  She said that street girls as young as 14 and 15 years-old are often trafficked to Macao, Singapore and Malaysia.

Supporting Street Children In Mongolia

Save the Children UK, 30/04/2001

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

[accessed 21 June 2011]

Poor health is common among both street children and children who work. They often risk injury from dangerous work, poor living conditions and gang violence. Children are also exposed to sexually transmitted diseases - especially girls working in the sex industry. But many children are unaware of the risks, and often don't even realize they are ill. Even if they recognize symptoms, it's often impossible to get professional help. Many of them are not officially registered, or have lost proof of identity. Without it, they can't get free health cover, and hospitals are reluctant to treat them because they won't get paid.




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

ECPAT International, 2006

[accessed 21 June 2011]

[accessed 25 December 2016]

The study Perception, Trends, and Nature of Child Prostitution, conducted in 2001 in Ulaanbaatar, the capital city, with a sample group of 1,193 children from grades 7 to 10, indicated that 42 per cent of girls engaged in prostitution are aged between 17 and 18, while 57 per cent are aged between 13 and 16. The majority of these girls (70 per cent) are school dropouts and around 10 per cent are homeless. Most of the girls engaged in prostitution (85 per cent) live underground in the city’s heating ducts or on the streets. Commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) in Mongolia is closely linked with the problem of street children, who are exposed to various forms of violence, sexual abuse and commercial sexual exploitation, including involvement in the production of pornography. Although there is no reliable data on the numbers of street children in the country, it is estimated to be between one and 4,000 (post 1990, i.e. after the end of the Soviet occupation); 64 per cent are aged between 9 and 14. The majority are found in Ulaanbaatar, but they can also be found to a lesser extent in other large cities such as Dornod and Zamiin Uud.

Factors pushing children into prostitution include sexual abuse, poor living onditions, and being lured, forced or influenced by others. The high rates of divorce and domestic violence (often accentuated by alcohol abuse) also lead many children to run away from abusive home environments to find themselves in highly vulnerable situations. At the end of the Soviet occupation, Mongolia experienced a severe economic collapse, but the various changes in the country’s economic structure were not accompanied by social welfare programmes targeting children and young people. sccp

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 21 February 2011]

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

INCIDENCE AND NATURE OF CHILD LABOR - There are increasing numbers of children living on the streets in Ulaanbaatar who may be at risk of engaging in hazardous work or face sexual exploitation.  Urban children often work in small enterprises such as food shops or in light industry..  While comprehensive information about the nature and extent of trafficking in Mongolia is not available, it is reported that Mongolia is a source and transit point for teenage trafficking victims for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation.

CHILD LABOR LAWS AND ENFORCEMENT - The Criminal Code prohibits prostitution of individuals under the age of 16, and penalties apply to facilitators, procurers, and solicitors of prostitution.

Human Rights Reports » 2004 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, February 28, 2005

[accessed 10 February 2020]

TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS – In 2003, the national police documented 148 cases of underage prostitution.  In May, the former Ministry of Infrastructure, which had oversight responsibility for the tourist industry, worked with UNICEF and tourist companies to develop a voluntary code of conduct to protect minors from sexual exploitation in the travel and tourist industry.  The primary targets of trafficking schemes were middle-class girls and young women, ranging in age from 14 to approximately 28, who were lured abroad by offers to study or work.

All material used herein reproduced under the fair use exception of 17 USC § 107 for noncommercial, nonprofit, and educational use.  PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHTS OF COMPONENT ARTICLES.  Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Child Prostitution - Mongolia",, [accessed <date>]