U.S. Department of State 2007 Trafficking in Persons Report - Central African Republic
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Author||Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons|
|Publication Date||12 June 2007|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2007 Trafficking in Persons Report - Central African Republic, 12 June 2007, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/467be3a523.html [accessed 16 September 2014]|
Central African Republic (Tier 2 Watch List)
The Central African Republic (C. A. R. ) is a source, transit and destination country for children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and sexual exploitation. While the majority of child victims are trafficked internally, some are also trafficked to and from Cameroon, Nigeria, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Children may also be trafficked from Rwanda to the C. A. R. Children are trafficked for sexual exploitation, domestic servitude, forced labor in diamond mines, shops and other forced commercial labor activities, such as ambulant vending. Awareness of trafficking in the C. A. R. is underdeveloped. No comprehensive trafficking studies have been conducted and little concrete data exists. A 2005 UNICEF study on child sexual exploitation, however, found over 40 sex trafficking cases in Bangui and four provinces. Indigenous pygmies may also be subjected to forced labor or labor in slave-like conditions within the C. A. R.
The Government of the C. A. R. does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so, despite limited resources. The C. A. R. is placed on Tier 2 Watch List for a second consecutive year for its failure to show evidence of increasing efforts to combat trafficking in persons over the previous year. To strengthen its response to trafficking, the C. A. R. should pass its draft law prohibiting all forms of trafficking, investigate whether its significant population of street and other destitute children are victims of trafficking, liaise with NGOs to provide specific assistance to trafficking victims, and educate law enforcement officials and the public about trafficking.
The Government of the Central African Republic made some efforts to combat trafficking through law enforcement during the reporting period. The country's laws do not prohibit any form of trafficking in persons. The government failed to report any trafficking arrests, prosecutions or convictions. The government in mid-2006 drafted a law prohibiting all forms of trafficking, and the Ministry of Justice hosted a series of technical committee meetings to make final comments on the legislation. In August 2006, the Central African Republic entered into a bilateral agreement with Cameroon to combat transnational crime, including trafficking. The government does not provide any specialized training to law enforcement officials about trafficking.
The C. A. R. government demonstrated modest efforts to protect trafficking victims during the reporting period. Because awareness of trafficking in the C. A. R. began only recently, neither the government nor NGOs operate shelters providing specific care to trafficking victims. However, the government has a shelter for orphans and destitute children, some of whom may be trafficking victims. In addition, the government also refers destitute children to NGOs for care. The Minister of Social Affairs has begun to organize an NGO network to improve government and civil society cooperation in providing care to children in distress, including trafficking victims. The government does not encourage victims to assist in trafficking investigations and prosecutions. The government does not provide legal alternatives to the removal of victims to countries where they would face hardship or retribution. The government does not arrest or detain victims.
The Government of the C. A. R. took some steps to prevent trafficking during the reporting period. The government created an inter-ministerial committee to combat child trafficking, composed of nine ministry representatives. The Ministry of Social Affairs worked with UNICEF to develop a National Action Plan to prevent child sexual abuse, including child sex trafficking. The Inter-Ministerial Committee adopted this plan in September 2006. The government is planning a trafficking awareness event in 2007 on African Children's Day.