CAIRO – 2 December 2021: The International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, December 2, marks the date of the adoption by the General Assembly of the United Nations Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others (resolution 317 (IV) of 2 December 1949).
The focus of this day is on eliminating contemporary forms of slavery such as trafficking in persons, sexual exploitation, the worst forms of child labor, forced marriage and forced recruitment of children for use in armed conflict.
According to the International Labor Organization, more than 40 million people worldwide are victims of modern slavery.
Although modern slavery is not defined in law, it is used as an umbrella term that includes practices such as forced labor, debt servitude, forced marriage, and human trafficking.
It mainly refers to situations of exploitation that a person cannot refuse or leave because of threats, violence, coercion, deception and/or abuse of power.
In addition, more than 150 million children are subjected to child labor, which represents approximately one in ten children worldwide.
Slavery has developed and manifested itself in different ways throughout history.
Today, some of the old traditional forms of slavery still exist as they were in the past, and some have been transformed into new ones.
Reports by United Nations bodies and NGOs document the persistence of ancient forms of slavery embodied in traditional beliefs and customs.
These forms of slavery resulted from long-standing discrimination against the most vulnerable groups in societies such as: those perceived to be of lower social class, tribal minorities and indigenous peoples.