U.S. Department of State 2002 Trafficking in Persons Report - Bahrain
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Author||Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons|
|Publication Date||5 June 2002|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2002 Trafficking in Persons Report - Bahrain, 5 June 2002, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4680d78bc.html [accessed 22 October 2014]|
Bahrain (Tier 3)
Bahrain is a destination country for trafficked persons. Trafficking victims who come to Bahrain in search of work are put into situations of coerced labor and sometimes slave-like conditions, including extreme working conditions, and physical or sexual abuse. Many low-skilled foreign workers have their passports withheld, contracts altered, and suffer partial or short or long-term non-payment of salaries. Victims come primarily from India, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka to work as domestic servants and in the construction industry.
The Government of Bahrain does not fully comply with minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so. The Penal Code does not specifically prohibit trafficking in persons. However it does outlaw forced labor, forced prostitution, and withholding of salary. Domestics may also seek legal redress for forced labor under the Penal Code, although the process can be very long. Government officials do not directly condone or facilitate trafficking, but the practice of issuing work visas without verifiable employment brings many workers to Bahrain under circumstances where they can be exploited. The government monitors its borders adequately. Regarding protection of victims, the government has made only minimal efforts, although trafficked victims are not usually detained or jailed. The government does not provide assistance to victims, and considers the victim's embassy responsible for assistance. In cases where mediation fails, the government does encourage victims to pursue legal action. In terms of prevention, the government has not yet taken any action. The government has formed a new inter-Ministerial anti-trafficking task force. Task force members are considering among other action items, the development of an informative brochure for distribution to foreign workers as they arrive in Bahrain. The task force is collecting information from relevant ministries to document the extent and nature of trafficking and to develop a National Plan of Action against Trafficking in Persons.