Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) officers in Pangani on Sunday rescued 11 women from a house in Eastleigh, Nairobi.
They are believed to be victims of a human trafficking syndicate.
The investigators said the Kenyan women aged between 23 and 30 were being held in a single room at Ushirika Estate.
Two foreigners arrested in an adjacent room are suspected to be behind the racket.
They were identified as Thabit Hanni Yaseen Radman and Faren Yassin Radman.
The DCI did not reveal the duo's nationalities, saying they are “in lawful custody as further investigations ensue”.
Police say the foreigners were allegedly recruiting the young women for unspecified jobs in the Middle East.
Cases of Kenyans, largely women, being trafficked to the Middle East for jobs are rife despite reports of victims being subjected to forced labour.
A 2019 US report accused Kenya of not fulling meeting ‘the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but is making significant efforts to do so’.
The US State Department graded Kenya in the second of four tiers in the Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report released in June last year.
Countries are grouped into Tier 1, Tier 2, Tier 2 Watch list and Tier 3 based on their efforts to fight human trafficking. Those at Tier 3 risk triggering US sanctions. Libya, Somalia and Yemen are classified as Special Case.
The report, however, credited Kenya with achieving more prosecution and convictions of traffickers, probing claims of official complicity in tackling trafficking and allocating Sh60 million for the victim assistance fund.
It said convicted traffickers were walking away with less stringent sentences as they were being tried for violating immigration or labour laws rather than crimes under the anti-trafficking law.
The report added that corruption remained endemic across the government, adding that officials supposedly under investigation were not prosecuted.
“Traffickers sometimes fraudulently obtained identity documents from complicit officials, and police often took bribes to warn traffickers of impending operations and investigations, particularly along the coast,” the report read.
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