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Immigration Police: Israel is no longer attractive in the women's trade
By Etti Spiegel, Haaretz Correspondent

There has been a significant decrease in Israeli participation in the international women's trade, the Ben Gurion Airport Immigration Administration revealed Sunday during a day of seminars on the topic.

According to a representative of the Immigration Police, "Israel has stopped being an attractive destination for the trade of women" as prostitutes, due to the country's recent crackdown on pimps and bordellos.

In 2004 Israel deported 2,984 women illegally residing in Israel from the Commonwealth of Independent States, of whom 900 - 31 percent - had been brought as prostitutes.


In 2005, the number of women illegally in Israel from the CIS decreased to 558, of whom 22, or 20 percent, were victims of the women's trade.

The decrease in the trade of women was the result of Israel's efforts to arrest pimps and close down bordellos. In the last two years, Israel has arrested 200 panderers of sex crimes.

"This is Sisyphean labor, hard and never ending," the representative of the Immigration Police said. "The profit in the women's trade is large,
so when bordellos here are repeatedly raided, causing pimps economic damages, it lowers their motivation to continue working in Israel."

The Immigration Police said it attributes most of Israel's success in curbing the women's trade to these crackdown, as the women themselves are usually reluctant to testify against their pimps.

"The girls are afraid to talk because this is a huge network with branches abroad, and they don't really have anywhere to run. So instead we strike an economic blow to the pimps by putting their bordellos out of commission and keeping them from accessing their expected profits."

The seminar Sunday was organized as a coordinated effort by the Justice Ministry, the Health Ministry and various women groups focused on the recognition of victims of the women's trade.

As part of the study, the Justice Ministry presented a series of new legal procedures on the subject, and the Health Ministry said it was increasing access to checkups, treatments and preventative drugs against sexually transmitted diseases.

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