Trafficking in human beings for forced labour in domestic and international law
: a comparative legal study of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom

  • Omar Mirei

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


This thesis examines the effect of combating of human trafficking as a crime. Special emphasis has been placed on forced labour and the rights of trafficked victims and their protection. The study explores various legislations undertaken at regional, national and international levels and considers rights of trafficked victims under international human rights and Islamic rights. The aim of the thesis is to provide a critical and comparative analysis of the legal systems of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and the United Kingdom (UK) in terms of human trafficking.

The thesis consists of eight chapter; each covering a different aspect of the study. It begins by providing background information regarding the issue of human trafficking and proceeds to examine developments of legal frameworks across the two jurisdictions to combat this crime and penalize the criminals. It seeks to examine the legal system pertaining to human trafficking for forced labour and analyse the three distinct platforms, that is, prevention, protection, and punishment, by comparing the legal systems of the KSA and the UK.

The examination of both countries aims to identify the strength and weaknesses of the KSA system as compared to the UK system. Thus, it concludes that the KSA can improve its ranking from Tier 2 watch list to Tier 1 if reforms are introduced in the legislation and enforcement domains. The study also demonstrates how the UK and the KSA portray ‘human trafficking’ in their regional laws. A problem often faced during the informationgathering and investigation stages is the lack of available evidence against traffickers, a particular issue in the KSA.

The thesis concludes that the transnational aspect of this phenomenon makes it necessary to establish a thorough and comprehensive legal framework to cover all matters pertaining to this crime, including the protection of victims and punishment of criminals in the KSA and the UK, including immigration and ‘kafala’ strategies that may be of value in future researches.
Date of AwardJun 2016
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Abertay University
SponsorsRoyal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, Cultural Bureau London
SupervisorMaria O'Neill (Supervisor)


  • Human trafficking
  • Forced labour
  • United Kingdom legal system for combating human trafficking
  • Saudi Arabia legal system for combating human trafficking

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