SEED, with the help of the United States Government, the KRG, and NGOS, has been working to combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP) in Kurdistan since 2016.

TIP is a form of modern-day slavery where people are exploited for the profit of others. The global slavery index for 2018 estimates that there are over 40 million people currently living in the world as slaves, with a conservative estimate of 174,00 Victims of Trafficking (VOT) in Iraq.

In our efforts to combat human trafficking, we have conducted research on the issue in Kurdistan, including 37 interviews with government and non-government actors, as well as focus groups, surveys, and interviews with at risk people. We identified key elements of human trafficking in Kurdistan such as most vulnerable groups for human traffickers, types of human trafficking, and its routes from Kurdistan. We were also able to gain better understating on peoples’ awareness of the issue.

We concluded our research with a series of roundtable discussions with key stakeholders including KRG representatives from the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs and the  Ministry of Interior, NGO actors, and foreign diplomatic missions. These discussions offered significant insight on further recommendations to combat human trafficking in Kurdistan which were included in our final report.  

This report will increase awareness of human trafficking, support government and non-government agencies in designing relevant programming to support victims and prevent trafficking in Iraq, and support the KRG in efforts to implement the new Anti-Trafficking Law, passed in July 2018. We hope you will find this report useful and look forward to working together to combat trafficking in Kurdistan.

Human Trafficking in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq Report