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Street Children

Human Trafficking & Modern-day Slavery

Poverty drives the unsuspecting poor into the hands of traffickers

Published reports & articles from 2000 to 2025                            

Republic of Guinea

Guinea possesses major mineral, hydropower, and agricultural resources, yet remains an underdeveloped nation. The country has almost half of the world's bauxite reserves. The mining sector accounts for more than 70% of exports. Long-run improvements in government fiscal arrangements, literacy, and the legal framework are needed if the country is to move out of poverty. Investor confidence has been sapped by rampant corruption, a lack of electricity and other infrastructure, a lack of skilled workers, and the political uncertainty because of the death of President Lansana CONTE in December 2008.

The Guinea franc depreciated sharply as the prices for basic necessities like food and fuel rose beyond the reach of most Guineans. Dissatisfaction with economic conditions prompted nationwide strikes in February and June 2006.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]

Description: Description: Description: Guinea

Guinea is a source, transit and, to a lesser extent, a destination country for men, women, and children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation. The majority of victims are children, and internal trafficking is more prevalent than transnational trafficking. Within the country, girls are trafficked primarily for domestic servitude and sexual exploitation, while boys are trafficked as forced beggars, street vendors, shoe shiners, and laborers in gold and diamond mines as well as for forced agricultural labor. Some Guinean men are also trafficked for agricultural labor within Guinea. - U.S. State Dept Trafficking in Persons Report, June, 2009    Check out a later country report here or a full TIP Report here


CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Guinea.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated 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 Human Trafficking are of particular interest to you.  Would you like to write about Forced-Labor?  Debt Bondage? Prostitution? Forced Begging? Child Soldiers? Sale of Organs? etc.  On the other hand, you might choose to include precursors of trafficking such as poverty and hunger. There is a lot to the subject of Trafficking.  Scan other countries as well.  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.


Guinea: A Window On West Africa’s War-Weary Children

UNICEF Press Centre, Conakry/Geneva, 4 November 2003

[accessed 8 February 2011]

UNICEF today said that reports from border monitors and NGOs reveal that Guinea is becoming a burgeoning refuge for thousands of children fleeing West Africa’s wars. Children fleeing recruitment, violence, and exploitation; crisscrossing borders; beginning as unaccompanied children in one place, becoming child soldiers in another, and refugee minors in a third. There’s an opportunity to break the cycle that sees these children return to the bondage of war, servitude, and sexual exploitation in neighboring countries.


*** ARCHIVES ***

2020 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Guinea

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 30 March 2021

[accessed 8 June 2021]


Traffickers exploited men, women, and children in forced labor in agriculture. Traffickers exploited boys in forced labor in begging, mining, fishing, and on coffee, cashew, and cocoa plantations. Some government entities and NGOs alleged forced labor was most prevalent in the mining sector. Women and children were the most vulnerable to trafficking (see section 7.c.). Migrant laborers represented a small proportion of forced labor victims.


The government did not effectively enforce the law, and inspections were not adequate. Boys frequently worked in the informal sectors of subsistence farming, small-scale commerce, street vending, shining shoes, and mining. Girls were subjected to domestic servitude domestically and abroad. Forced child labor occurred primarily in the cashew, cocoa, coffee, gold, and diamond sectors of the economy. Many children between ages five and 16 worked 10 to 15 hours a day in the diamond and gold mines for minimal compensation and little food. Child laborers extracted, transported, and cleaned the minerals. They operated in extreme conditions, lacked protective gear, did not have access to water or electricity, and faced a constant threat of disease. Many children did not attend school and could not contact their parents, which may indicate forced labor.

Many parents sent their children to live with relatives or Quranic teachers while the children attended school. Host families often required such children to perform domestic or agricultural labor, or to sell water or shine shoes on the streets. Some children were subjected to forced begging.

Commercial sexual exploitation of children also occurred. Penalties were not commensurate with similar crimes.

Freedom House Country Report

2020 Edition

[accessed 28 April 2020]


The 2016 criminal code specifically criminalized trafficking in persons and debt bondage, but reduced the minimum penalties for such crimes, and enforcement has been weak. In some mining areas, child labor is a major issue. There are also cases of women and children being trafficked for sexual exploitation to other parts of West Africa as well as Europe, the Middle East, and the United States.

2017 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, 2018

[accessed 17 April 2019]

[accessed 28 April 2020]

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

[page 474]

Children in Guinea are trafficked domestically and abroad for forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation. Some Guinean boys are subjected to forced labor in gold and diamond mining, including in Senegal and Mali, while girls are exploited in domestic work and commercial sexual exploitation in various West African and Middle Eastern countries. (3; 4; 19; 23; 24; 5)

Boys placed in the care of Koranic schools in Guinea are sometimes forced by their teachers to beg on the street or to work in fields, and must then surrender the money they have earned to their teachers. (4; 11; 18; 24; 5) In addition, through the system of confiage, parents who are unable to care for their children send them to relatives or strangers who are expected to provide food, shelter, and schooling to the children in exchange for housework. In practice, some of these children receive care and an education, while many become domestic workers and are victims of labor exploitation and abuse. (25; 4; 23; 14; 25).

The IRC in Guinea

International Rescue Committee IRC, 1 April 2009

[accessed 8 September 2014]

1 April 2009  The International Rescue Committee has ended its program in Guinea after nearly 18 years of operation. During that time the IRC assisted tens of thousands of refugees from neighboring Liberia, Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast who had fled war and civil strife in their homeland. In the mid-1990s, Guinea hosted as many as 800,000 refugees and was the scene of one of the largest humanitarian responses in the world.  Today, peace agreements and elections in Sierra Leone and Liberia have brought relative stability to the region and led to the closure of the refugee camps.

Program Brings Hope to Vulnerable Adolescent Girls in Guinea

International Rescue Committee IRC, N'Zerekore Guinea, 9 June 2004

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

[accessed 5 September 2011]

The IRC has launched a program in eastern Guinea to provide vocational and literacy training to vulnerable adolescent girls in refugee camps and their host communities. Most of the girls participating in the program have previously worked in the sex industry.

"The typical girl is around sixteen years old, may be infected with HIV/AIDS, is illiterate, has no permanent home and usually has at least one child already," says Rebecca Winthrop, the IRC's education program manager. "The program combines vocational training with counselling to help these young women cope with their past experiences while developing new skills to change their lives."

Guinean Police Arrest 35 Nigerian Girls En-route Sex Slavery

Yommi Oni with agency report

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

[accessed 5 September 2011]

[scroll down]

Guinean police yesterday in Conakry burst an 18-man Nigerian sex slave trafficking syndicate leading to the arrest of 35 Nigerian girls in the process of being taken to Europe to work as sex slaves. A BBC broadcast monitored in Lagos yesterday said the girls and their agents were arrested in a secluded part of Conakry and paraded on local television. The girls were alleged to have been offered betweenN20,000 and N200,000 by the agents who promised to help them secure a good employment in Europe. Explaining the mode of operation of the syndicate, Guinean Lieutenant Sako said that the agents usually take the girls to Guinea via the Republic of Mali where false Guinean passports were procured for the musing fictitious Guinean  names They girls are then returned to Mali where they are sold to other syndicates which transport them to Europe, especially Italy and Spain.

Reports That Child Refugees Sexually Exploited Shock Annan

Integrated Regional Information Networks IRIN, Abidjan, 27 February 2002

[accessed 9 March 2015]

Refugee children in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone have been subjected to sexual abuse and exploitation, reportedly by employees of national and international NGOs, UNHCR and other UN bodies, fellow refugees, security forces of host countries and other persons, according to a joint assessment by UNHCR and Save the Children-UK. The exchange of sex for money or gifts appeared widespread. The victims were mostly girls aged 13 to 18, while the most vulnerable group comprised orphans and children separated from one or both parents. The perpetrators "are often men in positions of relative power and influence who either control access to goods and services or who have wealth and/or income." - htcp

The Experience of Refugee Children in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), 26 Feb 2002

[accessed 8 September 2014]

[accessed 5 February 2019]

This publication suggests that sexual violence and exploitation of children appears to be extensive in the communities visited and involves actors at all levels, including those who are engaged to protect the very children they are exploiting – UN staff, security forces, staff of international and national NGOs, government officials, and community leaders. htcp

Concluding Observations Of The Committee On The Rights Of The Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 29 January 1999

[accessed 8 February 2011]

[35] The Committee is concerned at the increasing phenomenon of trafficking and sale of children into neighboring countries for work or prostitution. The insufficient measures to prevent and combat this phenomenon are also a matter of concern. In the light of article 35 and other related articles of the Convention, the Committee recommends that the State party review its legal framework and reinforce law enforcement, and strengthen its efforts to raise awareness in communities, in particular in rural areas. Cooperation with neighboring countries through bilateral agreements to prevent cross-border trafficking is strongly encouraged.

Protection Project:  Guinea [DOC]

The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), The Johns Hopkins University

[Last accessed 2009]

FORMS OF TRAFFICKING - UNICEF commissioned a special study, conducted between April and July 2003, that showed child trafficking was quite prevalent in Guinea. Children younger than 15 years of age are recruited for forced labor in mines or as domestic servants. An estimated 200 Malian girls younger than 17 years of age are working as domestic servants for wealthy people in Guinea.

The death of three girls in a road accident in November 2003 led to investigations that revealed the existence of a network that traffics children into Guinea from Mali for unpaid domestic servitude. The three who died were part of a group of eight Malian girls trafficked into the country. Women from Guinea reportedly travel to Bamako, the capital of Mali, to recruit young girls for domestic jobs in Guinea.


Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 9 February 2020]

TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS – Some NGOs reported that women, men, and children were trafficked within the country, as well as internationally, for the sex trade and illegal labor. Trafficking in persons from rural areas, mainly from the poorest areas in Upper Guinea, to urban centers was more common than international trafficking. As NGOs and the government increasingly recognized trafficking within the country, more emphasis was placed on this practice in the December launch of a national awareness campaign by UNICEF to combat trafficking. Accurate statistics were difficult to obtain because victims did not report the crime.

Some children were trafficked for forced labor in agriculture and diamond mining camps and for household work in Conakry. NGOs claimed that the country was frequently a transit route for a West African trafficking network, because fraudulent passports can be easily obtained and no visas are required for local nationals to travel to certain North Africa countries. From these nations, children were then sent to destinations in Europe

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 8 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 - Children are reported to work in the commercial sex industry.  Guinea is a source, transit and destination country for trafficking in persons, including children, for sexual exploitation and labor.  While there are reports of trafficking in children from neighboring countries, including Mali, there is no available information on the extent of the problem.  Internal trafficking occurs from rural to urban areas.

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