As reported over the past five years, human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims in Egypt, and traffickers exploit victims from Egypt abroad. Traffickers subject Egyptian children to sex trafficking and forced labor in domestic service, street begging, drug trafficking, quarrying, and agricultural work in Egypt. Traffickers, including some parents, force Egyptian children to beg in the streets of Cairo, Giza, and Alexandria, or exploit girls in sex trafficking. NGOs report the lack of economic and educational opportunities cause family members, including parents, husbands, and siblings, to subject women and girls to sex trafficking to supplement family incomes; in some cases, family members rape women and girls to coerce or force them into prostitution. Child sex tourism occurs primarily in Cairo, Alexandria, and Luxor. Individuals from the Arabian Gulf, including Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates, purchase Egyptian women and girls for “temporary” or “summer marriages” for the purpose of commercial sex, including cases of sex trafficking, as well as forced labor; the victims’ parents and marriage brokers, who profit from the transaction, often facilitate these arrangements. Traffickers reportedly exploit Egyptian children in sex trafficking and forced begging in Europe. Traffickers subject Egyptian adults to forced labor in construction, agriculture, domestic work, and low-paying service jobs in the region.
Traffickers subject men and women from South and Southeast Asia and East Africa to forced labor in domestic service, construction, cleaning, and begging, as well as sex trafficking. In 2017, observers reported an increase in West African trafficking victims, although it was unclear if this was the result of increased victim identification or an actual increase in numbers. Male refugees and migrants are vulnerable to exploitative labor practices, including forced labor. Foreign domestic workers – who are not covered under Egyptian labor laws – primarily from Bangladesh, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Nigeria, Sudan, South Sudan, and Sri Lanka are highly vulnerable to forced labor; employers at times require them to work excessive hours, confiscate their passports, withhold their wages, deny them food and medical care, and subject them to physical, sexual, and psychological abuse. Some employers file false claims of theft to further exploit domestic workers. Traffickers subject women and girls, including refugees and migrants from Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and the Middle East to sex trafficking in Egypt. In 2018, an international organization reported Colombian nationals were smuggled into Egypt to work in the entertainment industry, and in 2019, an NGO reported that employers in resort towns, such as Sharm El Sheikh, sexually exploit dancers from Colombia. Refugees from Syria, Sudan, South Sudan, and Yemen who live in Egypt are at risk of trafficking. For example, increasingly traffickers target Syrian refugees who have settled in Egypt for forced child labor, sex trafficking, and transactional marriages of girls that can lead to sexual exploitation, including sex trafficking and forced labor. NGOs reported in January 2020 that unaccompanied minors (UAMs) among the African migrant population are increasingly at risk of trafficking in Egypt; Sudanese gangs reportedly target UAMs to force or coerce the children to sell drugs or commit other petty crimes. Irregular migrants and asylum-seekers from the Horn of Africa, who transit Egypt en route to Europe, are increasingly at risk of trafficking along this migration route. During the reporting period, there were reports trafficking networks fraudulently recruited women from Guinea for employment in Egypt; the traffickers then exploited the women in domestic servitude or sex trafficking.