Rates of child sexual abuse are growing in Gambia
- By: Irina Haivas
Child sexual abuse, through sex tourism and sexual exploitation by men, is increasing in Gambia, says a new report by the Gambian government and Unicef.
Many tourists from developed countries visit the country mainly to have sex with young adults or children. Tourists in Gambia come mainly from Britain, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, and Germany.
“Gambia is a vulnerable target for unscrupulous visitors such as suspected or convicted paedophiles who enter the country in search of a low profile location to commit their crimes against children silently and with impunity,” the report says.
The “sugar daddy” syndrome is the second source of sexual abuse and the most widespread one. “There is a major problem of sexual exploitation of the children in Gambia by people from Gambia,” said Jean-Claude Legrand, Unicef's child protection officer. This involves abuse of young girls by adult Gambian men in exchange for money and