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Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso

Country Profile

Action Plan on Trafficking in Persons – Smuggling of Migrants

To date, there is no specific Action Plan on TIP.

Related Action Plans

Related to the fight against the worst forms of child labor, the Ministry in charge of human rights has draft a roadmap for the prevention and removal of child labor, particularly in gold mining and artisanal quarries (2015-2019). The Ministry of Human Rights coordinates the implementation of this roadmap in collaboration with all the actors concerned. The strategic objective of the roadmap is to contribute to the fight against child labor in gold mining and artisanal quarrying sites.

Operationally, the objectives pursued aim to:

  • Define, in a participatory and inclusive manner, concerted actions making it possible to fight against child labor on gold panning sites and artisanal quarries;

  • Contribute to the prevention of the phenomenon of child labor on artisanal gold mining and quarrying sites;

  • Contribute to the withdrawal of children from gold panning sites and artisanal quarries;

  • Contribute to the reintegration of children rescued from gold panning and artisanal quarrying sites.


The 2019-2023 National Strategy to combat the worst forms of child labor and its operational action plans, that aim at ensuring an enhanced protection of children against child labor through the prevention, protection, rehabilitation and reintegration of victims.

The National Child Protection Strategy 2020-2024 and its operational action plan aim to increase the protection of children by:

  • Reducing the number of child victims of violence;

  • Increasing the rate of access of children to care structures;

  • Increasing the number of convictions of perpetrators of violence of all kinds;

  • Increasing the effectiveness of interventions;

  • Inducing a change in the behavior of all stakeholders.

  • In progress: the development of a national action plan to combat violence against children. The Ministry in charge of labor policies has developed a strategy to combat the worst forms of child labor.

Institutional Framework

National Structures Responsible for Identifying Traffickers and Victims of Trafficking (VOT)

The identification is generally carried out by all relevant actors (including government, civil society, NGOs, IOs, transporters, truck drivers), and victims themselves. In particular:

  • Patrols and checks by the defense and security forces make it possible to intercept suspected or trafficked persons. They also make it possible to identify suspected traffickers;

  • Reports from the community (child protection networks, vigilance and surveillance committee, carriers).

National Structures Responsible for Border Management

Border Police Directorat (Direction de la Police des Frontières)

The Border Police Directorate is responsible for cross-border traffic control and security at land, rail, and air borders. In this capacity, it contributes to the security of international means of transport and carries out administrative police and judicial police missions at the borders. In addition, it participates in cooperation actions at national and international level.

The Border Police Directorate includes:

  • The cross-border control and regulation Division;

  • The Special Fonts Division.

National Structures Addressing Smuggling of Migrants

  • Ministry of Women, National Solidarity, Family and Humanitarian Action (MFSNFAH): protection, identification of victims, and socio-professional reintegration of victims;

  • The National Police (Regional Child Protection Brigade), and the Gendarmerie: identification of victims and prosecution of the suspected traffickers;

  • Ministry of Justice: laws formulation, trial, and conviction of the presumed traffickers;

  • Ministry of National Education: literacy support and professional reintegration;

  • Ministry of Health: medical care for victims;

  • Road carriers through their Union: support with returns to the areas of origin. This Union is under the supervision of the Ministry of Transport.

National Coordinating Bodies Trafficking in Persons


The CNVS is coordinating actions to counter TIP and is supported by:

  • Decree N ° 2009-529 / PRES / PM / MASSN / MATD / SECU - related to the creation, attributions, functioning and composition of a National Vigilance and Surveillance Committee (CNVS) against trafficking in persons and the related practices. It has divisions from central and departmental level;

As per Article 2 of the Decree, this Committee is designated as a support and guidance body in the fight against trafficking in persons and related practices.

The CNVS is composed by:

  • President: The Minister responsible for social action or his representative;

  • Vice-president: The Minister in charge of territorial administration or his representative;

  • Other Members: two representatives of the Ministry responsible for social action;

  • two representatives of the Ministry responsible for territorial administration;

  • a representative of the Ministry responsible for the women´s empowerment;

  • a representative of the Ministry of Justice;

  • a representative of the Ministry of Defense

  • a representative of the Ministry of Finance;

  • a representative of the Ministry of Communications;

  • a representative of the Ministry of Health;

  • a representative of the Ministry responsible for mining;

  • a representative of the Ministry of Transports;

  • a representative of the children’s Parliament;

  • a representative of the Transporters’ Union;

  • three representatives of religious leaders;

  • two representatives of the customary authorities;

  • three representatives of technical and financial partners;

  • three representatives of NGOs and associations.

Specialized Units - Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and Smuggling of Migrants (SOM)TIP

The new Penal code, Art 511-28, refers that by Ministerial Decree, the existence of a national body for vigilance and surveillance in the fight against trafficking in people and similar practices. The National Vigilance and Surveillance Committee (CNVS) is considered the specialized Unit in TIP and SOM in Burkina Faso.


General Information

In addition to being an origin and destination country for women and children who are victims of forced labor and sexual exploitation, Burkina Faso is considered to be a transit country for migrants from Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Mali and Senegal, who cross Niger to Algeria, Libya, so at to eventually reach Europe.

Most foreign victims of trafficking are children from countries in the region (Benin, Ghana, Mali, Guinea and Nigeria). There are also Malian children who are trafficked through Burkina Faso to Côte d’Ivoire. In addition, according to the United States Department of State’s Report on Human Trafficking, “women from other West African countries including Nigeria, Togo, Benin and Niger are recruited fraudulently through the promise for a job in Burkina Faso, and find themselves in situations of forced prostitution, forced labor in restaurants or domestic servitude in private households”.

Main Trends and Figures

With data from 45 provinces across the country, in 2018 the Government reported having identified 1.047 victims of trafficking, a reduction if compared to the 1.739 of the previous year. Victims are Nigerian girls, for the purpose of sex trafficking, and Burkinabe, exploited for force labor in Libya and sex trafficking in Lebanon. The Government also identified and rescued 1.284 child laborers from 86 artisanal gold mining.

Between 2017-2020, IOM assisted 71 victims of trafficking - essentially women and children mainly from Mali and Nigeria.

Burkina Faso

Existing Mechanisms

Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and Smuggling of Migrant (SOM) Hotlines

  • TIP/SOM - National Police Emergency: +22650342107

  • Others (Children protection/ assistance): 116*

*The 116 is the most used channel.

National Referral Mechanism and/or Standard Operating Procedures

There is no NRM or SOPs in place specifically on TIP and TIM.

However, there are other documents that apply to vulnerable migrants in general, but they are not specifically targeting cases of trafficking and smuggling.

The referral process is led by the Ministry for Women of National Family Solidarity and Humanitarian Action (MFSNFAH), that refers cases to designated agencies for assistance.

Measures to Detect Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and Smuggling of Migrants (SOM) Cases along the Borders

There is no specific mechanism, however there are training activities for the identification of TIP and TIM, organised at land and air borders.

Law Enforcement Agencies Responsible for Investigating Cases of Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and Smuggling of Migrant (SOM)

In Burkina Faso, law enforcement is carried out by the Ministry of Justice. However, investigations are carried out by the Ministry of Security, and these two Ministries work together.

Identity and Travel Documentation/Investigation and Forensic Lab

(This is in views to support identity verification/establishment as for victims and traffickers).

Under the National Police, the Directorate of Technical and scientific Police (DPTS) is in charge of carrying out digital investigations, ballistics and analyses. It has a Division in charge of documentation and criminal analysis.

Technical Working Groups (TWG)

There are no TWG specifically responsible for studying TIP and SOM.


However, there is a Working Group (WG) on child protection, which considers the issues of TIP and SOM concerning children. Furthermore, a WG on mixed migration exists, and serves as a forum for discussion and information exchange.

The Child Protection Working Group (GTPE) is composed by institutional and associative actors. It meets regularly at national level, and is coordinated by The Division for Child Protection (DPE) of the Directorate of Public Security of the National Police. The DPE was set up to promote the coordination of interventions and the synergy of actions in the field of child protection. Working sub-groups support the Ministry of Women, National Solidarity, Family and Humanitarian Action (MFSNFAH) in its reflection on specific themes including TIP.

Agency Responsible for Data Collection and Processing

In charge: The Division of Child Protection (DPE)

There are various agencies who are collecting TIP and SOM Data. The Statistics and Documentation Service of the DPE is responsible for data synthesis and processing, but is not yet formalized by a Decree. Data processing consists of cross-referencing compiled data to identify inconsistencies. It should be noted that figures obtained are transferred to Excel Spreadsheets for the production of tables and figures used in the national reports.

Protection and Assistance to Victims of Trafficking Agencies

Competent Authority and Mechanism to Identify Victims of Trafficking

The CNVS is the competent authority that officially recognizes a person as a victim of trafficking or smuggling. It is enforced by the following laws:

  • Law 029-2008 of May 15, 2008 relating to the fight against trafficking in persons and similar practices provides in its Article 25, by Decree of the Council of Ministers, the creation of a national body for vigilance and surveillance to combat against trafficking in persons and related practices. Following on, on July 17, 2009, Decree N ° 2009-529 / PRES / PM / MASSN / MATD / SECU was adopted, to establish the attributions, functions and composition of a National Vigilance and Surveillance Committee (CNVS) against human trafficking and similar practices with divisions ranging from the central to the departmental level.

  • The law sets out the constituent elements which make it possible to designate who can be considered as a victim of trafficking or smuggling. Legally, the elements must be established before a judge can declare whether a person is trafficked or smuggled. However, in practice, victims of trafficking are identified on the ground by security forces, members of social services or civil society organizations.

Assistance can be given to victims even if not all constituent elements defined in the law are met. In conclusion, victims have access to assistance services and therefore do not depend on whether they are officially recognized as such.


  • Ministry of Women, National Solidarity, and the Family and Humanitarian Action - Ouagadougou, Bobo, Dori - Women, Children, All;

  • KEEGO Association (West Africa Network)

  • IOM

  • Association Jeunesse pour le Bien-être Familiale (AJBF) - Ouahigouya - Minors

  • Talitha Kum - Ouagadougou, Bobo Dioulasso, Banfora - Minor, Women, All

  • Association Hèrèdjigui (Centre en construction) - Dédougou - Minors


  • RED CROSS Burkina - Ouagadougou, Bobo Dioulasso, Fada N’gourma, Dori - Children, Women, All*

  • Association Jeunesse pour le Bien-être Familiale (AJBF) - Ouahigouya - Minors

  • Talitha Kum - Ouagadougou, Bobo Dioulasso, Banfora - Minor, Women, All

  • Association Hèrèdjigui (Centre en construction) - Dédougou - Minors


  • Ministry of Women, National Solidarity, and the Family and Humanitarian Action - Ouagadougou, Kadiogo, Burkina Faso - Minor, Women, All

  • Ministry of Youth and Promotion of Youth Entrepreneurship

  • IOM

  • Association Jeunesse pour le Bien-être Familiale (AJBF) - Ouahigouya - Minors

  • Talitha Kum - Ouagadougou, Bobo Dioulasso, Banfora - Minor, Women, All

  • Association Hèrèdjigui (Centre en construction) - Dédougou - Minors


  • Keego RAO Association - Minor, Women, All

  • IOM

Cross-Border Cooperation

International Cooperation Agreements - Cross Border and Extradition Treaties


  • The United Nations Convention against Transnational Organised Crime and the Protocols, ratified 2002.

  • ECOWAS Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters (1992) and Convention on extradition (1994)

  • The Libreville Joint Platform for Action of 24 February 2000 on the development of strategies to combat trafficking in children for the purpose of exploiting their work in West and Central Africa

  • The Multilateral Regional Cooperation Agreement to Combat Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children in West and Central Africa signed in Abuja on July 6, 2006.

  • the Cooperation Agreement to combat child trafficking in West Africa, signed on July 27, 2005 in Abidjan between Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, and Togo

  • the Headquarters Agreement between Burkina Faso and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) signed on April 26, 2003 in Geneva

  • INTERPOL, Burkina Faso has National Central Bureau (BCN) within the National Police and at Border Police posts and airports

  • UNODC does not have a representation in Burkina Faso. UNODC implements the Sahel Program in which Burkina Faso is included. The UNODC Sahel Program supports the development of accessible, efficient and accountable criminal justice systems to combat illicit trafficking drug trafficking, organised crime, terrorism and corruption in the region.


  • The Cooperation Agreement between the Republic of Mali and Burkina Faso in the fight against cross-border trafficking in children signed in Ouagadougou on June 25, 2004

  • The Agreement with the Republic of Côte-d´Ivoire on the fight against cross-border trafficking in children signed on October 17, 2013

  • Tripartite Agreement on the protection of child victims of trafficking or in mobility between Burkina, Togo and Benin signed in December 2019 in Ouagadougou

  • Agreement on cooperation in justice matters between the French Republic and Burkina Faso, April 24, 1961

  • General Agreement on cooperation in judicial matters between Burkina Faso]and the Republic of Mali, November 23, 1963.

  • Extradition agreements: Burkina Faso has signed agreement with France in 2018.

Transnational Referral Mechanism

A transnational referral mechanism (TRM) does not currently exist.

To learn more about TRMs, see IOM’s Transnational Referral Mechanism Model (TACT) project and tool.

Additional International Instruments

  • The Ministry of Women, National Solidarity, and the Family and Humanitarian Action Ministry produces a national report each year (2015, 2016) on human trafficking in Burkina Faso. 

Relevant National Legislation and Policies

Entry Requirements 

All citizens from the 15 ECOWAS Member States: are entitled to travel/enter the country  with National ID card or ECOWAS Laissez-Passer; 

Visa on Arrival: all European Union Members States, Chad, Libya,  

Visa exempted: Mauritania (90 days), Liberia, Central African Republic, United Arab Emirates. 

National Legislation 

Burkina Faso has made a concrete effort to ratify the main  international and regional anti-trafficking texts (cited below).  Consequently, the major challenge lies on the one hand in the  transposition of these provisions into national laws and, on  the other hand, in taking adequate measures for their effective  implementation. Some references are worth mentioning, such as:

  • Law 029-2008/AN of May 15, 2008 on counter trafficking in persons and assimilated  practices in Burkina Faso. This law has been strongly inspired by the Protocol of Palermo of  2002, and constitutes the legislative reference the fight against TIP in Burkina Faso. It defines  trafficking in persons (Article 1), similar practices (Article 7 with particular reference to the  exploitation of the begging of others) and smuggling of migrants (Articles 10 to 12). It describes  the constituent elements of these three offenses, the procedure, the aggravating situations and  the various punishments for the perpetrators.

  • Law 15-2014/AN of May 13, 2014 on protecting children in conflict or in danger in  Burkina Faso, of which Article 97 s stipulates that “a child is considered to be in danger when  his/her living condition does not allow his/her good physical or psychological development.  Being in danger include, but is not limited to, trafficking, prostitution, pornography, violence,  physical abuse or serious risk of physical abuse, sexual abuse or serious risk of sexual abuse and  psychological abuse”.

  • Law 028-2008/AN of 13 May 2008 on the Labor Code in Burkina Faso which establishes  the conditions for employment in Burkina Faso with prohibitions related to all forms of slavery/ servitude, exploitation or forced labor. 

  • Decree No.2016-504/PRES/PM/MFPTPS/MS/MFSNF of 09 June 2016 establishing the list  of hazardous work prohibited to children in Burkina Faso.  √ Decree 2379 of 3 August 1942 on the suppression of the manufacture, circulation and  trafficking of obscene publications and acts contrary to good morals. 

  • Law No. 061-2015 / CNT of September 6, 2015 on the prevention, repression and  reparation of violence against women and girls and the care of victims. It intends to  prevent, repress and repair all forms of violence against women and girls, particularly physical,  moral, psychological, sexual, economic, heritage and cultural violence.

In addition to these important texts, a large number of sparse or sectoral provisions can be  identified in the Burkina Faso Constitution, the Penal Code or statutory texts (decrees, ministerial  decrees) addressing general or specific aspects of protection for Burkinabe citizens or foreign  nationals living in Burkina Faso against any forms of violence, including trafficking in persons. The  penal provisions of the laws above were taken over by law n ° 025-2018 / AN of May 31, 2018 of  the penal code.

For more information on Burkina Faso’s legislation see: (available in French). 

Recent Modifications and New Decrees 

Law N025-2018/AN: the Penal Code has been updated and adopted in 2018. Paragraph 1 - Art.  511 of the New Penal Code includes a series of provisions regarding trafficking in persons and  smuggling.

Existing Policies 


The Ministry of Justice, Human Rights and Civic Promotion  provides legal assistance to all users of the Human Rights  Information, Listening and Orientation Centers  (CIEODH). In this context, all alleged victims of TIP can have  access to this legal assistance, regardless of their immigration  status or the way in which they have been exploited. Art 511- 25 of 2018 Penal Code states that foreign victims of trafficking  and similar practices may request to stay in the national territory  temporarily or permanently. Art 511-26 states that victims, in  particular the children, are entitle to legal assistance during the  instruction.  

In order to facilitate access to a fair trial, Burkina Faso set up the Legal Assistance Fund through  Decree No. 2016-341 / PRES / PM / MJDHPC / MINEFID of 4th May 2016, approving the  establishment of the Legal Assistance Fund. Its mission is to contribute and support any natural  person who is unable, due to insufficient resources, to exercise their rights in Court either as a  plaintiff or as a defendant. It is a mechanism of assistance for vulnerable and people in need, and, as  such, it can assist people who are victims of human trafficking or smuggling. 


In the new Penal Code adopted in 2018, Article 512-7 cites that the victim has the right to fair  and adequate reparation and compensation, including the necessary means for his/her fullest possible  rehabilitation. In the event of death of the victim resulting from an act of torture or similar practices,  the beneficiaries of the victim are entitled to compensation. 

Notwithstanding any criminal prosecution, the State has an obligation to provide reparation to the  victims

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