10 Countries with the Highest Number of Enslaved People

7. Thailand: Though a multi-cultural nation, Thailand has the highest anticipated prevalence of modern slavery in the South-East Asia region. The Greater Mekong sub-region in this country is considered as a hub of exploitation with the presence victims of slavery originating from both within and outside Thailand’s borders.

Modern slavery affects some men, women and children from within Thailand; however, most of the victims are largely migrant workers from neighboring countries. Human trafficking is another significant problem prevailing in Thailand, with people trafficked out of Thailand to countries like China, Germany, Israel, Japan, South Africa and the U.S. Thai women are mostly vulnerable to trafficking into the forced domestic and sex industries in countries all over the world, lured by seemingly genuine job offers, but often exploited through debt bondage.

6. Russia: A northern Eurasian nation, Russia is among the world’s top 10 countries by absolute number of people held in slavery. It has the sixth largest slave population in the world. Russia has an estimated 516,000 slaves in a population that the study put at 143 million where most of the migrants are doing forced labor in agriculture and the construction industry. Research indicates that women and children, both Russian and non-Russian, have been enslaved within Russia, and trafficked across its borders, for sexual exploitation and as forced labor.

5. Ethiopia: A landlocked nation, Ethiopia is a country with a low level of economic and social development, a poor human rights record and high rates of unemployment. Because of which, Ethiopians are at risk of various forms of modern slavery. This country has seen a rapid increase in outward migration, with millions of Ethiopians travelling throughout Africa and overseas, mostly to Gulf States and the Middle East, to find work. The increased migration of Ethiopians abroad has led to increased reports of abuse and exploitation of workers. In addition to the exploitation of Ethiopian migrant workers abroad, modern slavery is also an issue within Ethiopia, particularly for children.

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