Comment: Molodovan "trafficking" push

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Salamon Alapitvany (
Sat, 6 Jun 1998 09:58:56 -0700

Moldovan Deputies Crack Down on Prostitution

CHISINAU -- (Reuters) Prostitutes in Moldova face stiffer fines and jail
terms after parliament passed tough new laws against the sex trade on

Prostitutes who once had to pay a $10 fine will have to pay $200-$700 if
caught by police, with repeat offenders facing up to 12 months in prison.

One deputy warned the law was a two-edged sword. "You raise penalties --
they raise their prices," he said.

As in other former Soviet republics fallen on hard times, prostitution is
widespread in the country of four million which neighbours Romania and

An Interior Ministry official said its vice squad had only six officers and
was poorly equipped, registering only 75 cases of prostitution this year.

"According to police data there are at least 350 brothels in the capital
Chisinau alone," another deputy said. ( (c) 1998 Reuters)

This is so frustrating, an alienated Government overseeing an economy that
is failing women, which then criminalises some of the consequences of
women's poverty that they helped to create !

We have visited Molodova many times and spent a lot of time with local sex
workers and most of the women we spoke to would love to be "trafficked" to
Turkey, Cyprus or Hungary to escape the oppression in Molodova. They used
to be available for local purchase for about $2 000.00 from their business
associates, some are free agents but even they would need help to acquire
visas. with travel arrangements, and finding "work" in their destination

Now the Government makes their lives even more difficult and creates even
more "push" for sex workers to migrate to other places to escape fines that
can be more than a year's wages or even imprisonment.

The Molodovan Government will now most probably "coerce" the "trafficking"
of more women than any other gang in Chisinau.

Makes you weep doesn't it ?

John Davies.

Salamon Alapitvany and Ildiko K Memorial Civil Rights Institute

Working for peace and equitable justice for all marginalised people
Seeking to include sex workers within civil society without discrimination
Believing in change through consensus not repression.

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