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03 Oct 2015

Trafficking in Persons: An Analysis of Afghanistan

Trafficking in human beings is a global problem, with an estimated 800,000 to 900,000 people trafficked across international borders each year and an untold many trafficked within their own countries. Unfortunately, Afghanistan is confronted with a significant trafficking problem, which is deeply intertwined with the country's other problems as it emerges from decades of lawlessness. IOM has conducted a study to assess the trends and responses to trafficking in Afghanistan. A combined approach of written survey forms, structured interviews, and a literature review have produced a substantial body of information about trafficking in Afghanistan, ranging from specific and verified cases to credible but unverified cases to information about general trends and cultural contexts. The report documents examples of many forms of trafficking. A range of "trafficking-related" trends is also documented. Though these incidents may not constitute "trafficking" as defined in the Trafficking Protocol, they still raise serious human rights concerns and share many causes and possible counter measures with more traditional trafficking practices. Although the bulk of information on trafficking received is internal and among Afghans in neighbouring countries, there have also been cases of cross-border trafficking - Afghanistan as a country of origin, transit, and destination. This report also explores the legal, social, economic, and security environment to establish how trafficking has taken root and to point to early recommendations for addressing the problem.


  • Introduction: Data & methodology, Limitations & constraints, Definition 
  • Background: History, Ministerial Structure and Functions, Legal structure and explanation of laws, Human rights monitoring mechanisms
  • Trafficking trends: Internal trafficking, Afghanistan as a country of origin, Afghanistan as a country of transit, Afghanistan as a country of destination, Neighbouring countries: Pakistan, Incidents of concern:Trafficking related trends 
  • Government actions to counter trafficking: National Development Plan, Participation in regional dialogues, Ratification of CEDAW, Other legal efforts, Counter-trafficking office, MoI
  • Conclusions
  • Recommendations
  • Annex: International legal instruments, Afghan civil and penal codes