Paris — The revelation that migrants are being sold as slaves in Libya is not an isolated case: more than 40-million people were estimated to be victims of modern slavery in 2016. The figure includes some 25-million in forced labour — made to work under threat or coercion — and 15-million in forced marriage, according to a report. But the number of people in slavery is probably even higher, according to the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and human rights group Walk Free Foundation, who jointly carried out the study. Their key findings include that about a quarter of the nearly 25-million people in forced labour are in private households, but they can also be found in factories, on construction sites, on farms and fishing boats. The study gives the example of 600 fishermen held on boats in Indonesian waters for many years. More than half the slaves are in debt to whoever is holding them. Others cannot escape because they ha...

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