about the government's commitment was highlighted two years
after the abolition of slavery when it was planned to release
7000 slaves living around the Mali/Niger border however none
turned up with human rights groups accusing the government of
intimidating those slaves from attending.
The practice is particularly evident in the north of the country where the Tuareg
nomads don't recognise Niger's (or any other country's) laws as being applicable
to them. A recent court ruling, however, has established that the Niger
government is responsible for actively ensuring slavery is eradicated even
amongst the Tuareg rather than just making it illegal.
To fully comprehend what it means to live in slavery, you need to suspend all
understanding of human interactions, and see a person as nothing more than a
piece of property with no rights, not even the right to keep their children.
This is because when those children are born they also the immediate property of the slave master on
birth and can be sold for profit elsewhere or given away as gifts to prevent
bonding between mother and child.
Most slaves in Niger are inherited down the generations and
work as domestic servants, workers on the land or as herders. Others work in
mines or in stone quarries.