Esther Torrado Martín-Palomino
Universidad de la Laguna, España


Gender differences as observed in migrants entering irregularly in Spain from Africa, occur at origin, but also during the journey and at destination. In the case of migrant minors who travel unaccompanied by a legal guardian, they are closely linked to human traffic networks. These are migrations where the stringent controls on mobility and gendered punishments are an effective and profitable school on migrating inequality. Through those punishments (intended to be exemplary, and force upon disempowerment and submission), which are mainly of sexual nature, traffickers and pimps get significant profits. They are a useful tool that will work perfectly, through a close-fitting selection of victims (young, poor and irregular women) and the ongoing use of violence.

Keywords: Gender, unaccompanied minors, irregularity, migration, invisibility, trafficking and human smuggling.