Asmara, Eritrea – (African Boulevard News) – A new report reveals that ‘modern slavery’ is most rampant in North Korea and Eritrea. The report, released on Tuesday, shows that an estimated 50 million people around the world are “living in situations of modern slavery” in 2021, marking an increase of 10 million from the previous study done in 2016.
The report, which covers 175 countries, found that more than half of those in modern slavery live in just five countries, including North Korea, Eritrea, China, Burundi, and Central African Republic.
Eritrea, in particular, has the highest prevalence of modern slavery in the world. The East African nation has a population of about 5 million people, but according to the report, approximately 174,000 people in the country are victims of modern slavery.
North Korea is ranked second in the index, with an estimated 1060,000 victims of modern slavery. This includes state-imposed forced labor, including in coal mines, agriculture, and construction, particularly for those who are considered to be disloyal to the regime.
In China, the estimated number of people in modern slavery is the highest in the world, at 3.2 million, while in Burundi, the report states that 22,000 people are living in modern slavery.
The report, which was published by the Walk Free Foundation, also found that over 80% of people in modern slavery are being exploited for labor, while 20% are trapped in forced marriage.
Experts have highlighted the need for governments, businesses, and consumers to take action to address the issue of modern slavery. The report provides recommendations, including increased transparency in supply chains and stronger legal frameworks for protecting vulnerable groups.
Andrew Forrest, the founder of the Walk Free Foundation, said in a statement that “we cannot stand by while so many people suffer in plain sight.”
The study sheds light on the need for collective efforts to combat modern slavery. As individuals, we must remain vigilant about the products we purchase and the supply chains of the companies we support. Governments must also take steps to strengthen legal frameworks and hold businesses accountable for their participation in modern slavery.
As a global community, we must take every step necessary to ensure that no human being is living in a state of slavery in our modern world.