As reported over the past five years, human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims in Chad, and traffickers exploit Chadian victims abroad. The country’s trafficking problem is primarily internal and exacerbated by high levels of poverty across the country. Families frequently entrust their children to live with relatives or intermediaries to receive education, apprenticeship, goods, or money; some of those relatives or intermediaries subsequently subject the children to forced labor in domestic service or cattle herding. Traffickers exploit children in forced labor as beggars in urban areas, agricultural laborers on farms, gold mining in the north of the country, charcoal production, and as domestic workers. In the Lake Chad region, traffickers exploit children in catching, smoking, and selling fish. Some religious leaders subject children who leave their villages to attend traditional Quranic schools—known as mouhadjirin—into forced begging, street vending, or other forced labor.
Cattle herders subject some children to forced labor as they follow traditional routes for grazing cattle and, at times, cross ill-defined international borders into Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Sudan, and Nigeria. Traffickers in rural areas sell children in markets for use in cattle or camel herding. In some cases, military or local government officials exploit child herders in forced labor. Traffickers subject some rural Chadian girls who travel to larger towns in search of work to child sex trafficking or domestic servitude. Criminals may exploit refugees and internally displaced people in Chad to child sex trafficking. Experts reported prison officials used inmates as forced labor on private projects, separate from the prisoners’ sentences for their crimes. According to an international organization, Chad hosts more than 450,000 refugees and more than 130,000 internally displaced persons; populations vulnerable to trafficking based on their economic instability and lack of access to support systems. International organizations report the Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram and its offshoot Islamic State-West Africa forcibly abducted minors to serve as child soldiers, suicide bombers, child brides, and as forced laborers. Community-based vigilante groups tasked with defending people and property in rural areas may recruit and use children in armed conflict.