There are an estimated 89,000 people living in modern slavery in Greece (GSI 2018). Traffickers exploit people from Greece and aboard in the country. Women and children from Eastern and Southern Europe, South and Central Asia, China, Georgia, Iraq, Nigeria, and Russia are subjected to sex trafficking in brothels, on the street, in massage salons and in hotels. While people subjected to forced labour are primarily children and men from Africa, Eastern Europe and South Asia. Debt bondage is reported to occur in the agricultural industry in Greece. And the marginalised Romani children are forced to sell goods on the street, beg, and commit theft. Refugee and migrant travellers are at an increased risk of human trafficking and modern slavery. Dimitria was kidnapped as a child and her trafficker attempted to sell her organs. She was discovered by police after guests at the hotel where she was being kept made a noise complaint.
There are an estimated 20,000 people living in conditions of modern slavery in Albania (GSI 2018). An estimated 10% of girls in Albania are married before their eighteenth birthday, with child marriage most common among the Roma ethnic group and in poor, isolated and rural areas. Child marriage is driven by gender inequality and while country has committed to eliminate child, early and forced marriage by 2030 in line with target 5.3 of the UN Sustainable development goals, no progress has been reported thus far. Human traffickers also exploit domestic and foreign victims in Albania, and traffickers exploit victims from Albania abroad. Traffickers exploit Albanian women and children in sex trafficking and forced labor within the country, especially during tourist season. Traffickers use false promises such as marriage or employment offers to force victims into sex trafficking. Traffickers exploit Albanian victims in sex trafficking in countries across Europe, particularly Kosovo, Greece, Italy, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, North Macedonia, Norway, the Netherlands, and the UK. Albanian migrants who seek employment in Western Europe face forced labor and forced criminality, particularly in the UK. S was born in Albania to a poor family who forced her to marry someone living in Greece at the age of 14. S moved to Greece with her husband illegally, subjected to emotional and physical abuse daily. After a year, S escaped her marriage and was deported back to Albania, however after giving birth to her daughter, Sara, S’s father forced her into another marriage with a 60-year-old man. S escaped this second forced marriage with the help of her father’s friend she had known since she was ten years old. This man, however, attempted to traffik S into prostitution in Italy. She was caught by police on a boat and referred to a safe place back in Albania.
There are an estimated 145,000 people living in conditions of modern slavery in Italy (GSI 2018). Italy is a destination, transit, and source country for women, children, and men subjected to sex trafficking and forced labour. Victims originate from Nigeria, Romania, Morocco, China, and other countries. Female victims are often subjected to sex trafficking in Italy after accepting promises of employment as dancers, singers, models, restaurant servers, or caregivers. Romanian and Albanian criminal groups force Eastern European women and girls into commercial sex. V.P. travelled to Greece for work when she was 16 years old where she was introduced to a man who promised to marry her. Instead he forced her into prostitution, forcing her to work up to 12hrs and beating her daily. After 2 years V.P. was able to escape and came back to Albania. However, unable to find work she left Albania for Italy where she was exploited as a prostitute for a second time.
Despite having the lowest regional prevalence of modern slavery in the world, Europe remains a destination, and to a lesser extent, a source region for the exploitation of men, women and children in forced labour and commercial sexual exploitation. According to the most recent Eurostat findings, European Union (EU) citizens account for 65 percent of identified trafficked victims within Europe. These individuals mostly originate from Eastern Europe, including Romania, Bulgaria, Lithuania and Slovakia. In Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina, the European Parliament has identified corruption and the judicial system as reform challenges towards accession talks within the EU. Peter ran away from home after being abused by his father. After living on the streets for a year, his uncle arranged for him to leave the country. Peter was sold by his uncle and smuggled across Europe against his will.
Born in Albania, Valdete was trafficked into Greece, where Albanian victims are also trafficked in from Nigeria, and then into Italy. Many women are trafficked into richer Western European countries from the poorer Eastern countries, including Albania. The fall of communism in 1991 led to a rise in organized crime in Albania: in 2001 it was estimated 100,000 Albanian women and girls had been trafficked to Western European and other Balkan countries in the preceding ten years. More than 65 percent of Albanian sex-trafficking victims are minors at the time they are trafficked, and at least 50 percent of victims leave home under the false impression that they will be married or engaged to an Albanian or foreigner and live abroad. Another ten percent are kidnapped or forced into prostitution. The women and girls receive little or no pay for their work, and are commonly tortured if they do not comply.
Born in Albania, Sanije was “married” to a stranger in Greece by her father, then later to another man, both of whom abused her. Many women are trafficked into richer Western European countries from the poorer Eastern countries, including Albania. The fall of communism in 1991 led to a rise in organized crime in Albania: in 2001 it was estimated 100,000 Albanian women and girls had been trafficked to Western European and other Balkan countries in the preceding ten years. More than 65 percent of Albanian sex-trafficking victims are minors at the time they are trafficked, and at least 50 percent of victims leave home under the false impression that they will be married or engaged to an Albanian or foreigner and live abroad. Another ten percent are kidnapped or forced into prostitution. The women and girls receive little or no pay for their work, and are commonly tortured if they do not comply.