Police in Niger have rescued 232 victims of sex trafficking and forced labor, including girls as young as 10, in a major operation in the capital Niamey, Interpol said on Wednesday.
“Operation Sarraounia” involved more than 100 police officers who conducted a series of raids over 10 days in late January, said the global police organization, which provided assistance.
The victims included 46 children, mostly locals forced into sex work in hostels and slums, and 180 Ghanaian men who were promised jobs online and then enslaved for forced labor.
Police also arrested 18 suspected traffickers.
Niger is a source, destination and transit country for human trafficking, with thousands of migrants passing through each year en route to North Africa and Western Europe.
The country cracked down on migration in 2016 under pressure from the European Union, but experts say this increased the risk of exploitation for migrants by forcing them to move in secret.
“It’s bad enough when you…
Source: Vanguard Newspaper