February 18th, 2011
11:37 AM ET

'Women for sale' store highlights sex trafficking in Israel

A designer clothing store, a comic book store, a tattoo parlor and a ... women for sale store.

This unusual window display shocked shoppers at a busy Tel Aviv mall in October when among the run-of-the-mill shops, they came across a group of young women standing in a storefront.

On them were price tags detailing their age, weight, height, dimensions and country of origin.

Organizers said the campaign is designed to bring awareness to women trafficking. It aims to collect enough signatures to pressure the Israeli justice ministry to back legislation that makes it a crime for men to go to prostitutes.

This legislation is the next important step in the fight against women trafficking, said attorney Ori Keidar, one of the founders of the task force against the problem.

"The legislation against the prostitutes' customers will bring a reduction in the demand for prostitution and it will be a less lucrative business for crime organizations," Keidar said.

"This in turn will bring a reduction in the trafficking of women."

Keidar said the legislation is modeled after similar legislation in Sweden that has drastically reduced trafficking and prostitution.

Over the past decade, about 10,000 women have been trafficked into Israel in what Keidar calls "modern slavery."

The women are locked, beaten, raped, starved and forced to receive 15-30 men a day 365 days a year, according to the attorney.

About three years ago, Israeli police greatly reduced women trafficking by pouring resources into the problem. Security forces have also helped by stepping up patrols on the Israeli-Egyptian border as a result of al Qaeda presence in the Sinai.

This 300-kilometer border was the main route for smuggling women into Israel, Keidar said.

"This legislation against the customers will bring a further reduction in trafficking and with a little more pressure we can make this go away" Keidar said.

This story originally appeared on CNN.com on October 24, 2010.

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soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. ROBIN VIRDI

    This is an amazing way to touch the heart and bring awareness to people. I was struck by this idea just sitting in front of my laptop. This idea should be applied in Asian Countries as well to psychologically hit the men who support the sexual trade in a way or the other.

    March 9, 2011 at 12:26 am | Reply
    • notimetohate

      I also believe this is a superb idea to bring attention to the fact. I think they should set this up in Grand Central in New York City, in all cities everyday.

      March 13, 2011 at 8:29 pm | Reply
  2. Hal1490

    An adult woman has a right to work as a courtesan, and is in many ways more honest and valuable to society than a wife who marries to have all of a man's property–where is the value in the latter. Courtesans can be very well compensated. Slavery is a different thing entirely. However, radical feminist organizations are dead set on outlawing all forms of sex for sale including classy courtesans, and even international dating which they tried to do with the IMBRA. Nothing will satisfy these radical feminists until they have to do no work at all and still receive equal pay, get all of a man's property upon marriage, and take away from men any other marriage choices they might have so that American men either have to marry them and their attitude: what is mine is mine and what is yours is mine or just live a life without sexual expression. The rest of the world does not want to be like the violent, gun crazed US with no medical care and little education unless at astronomical cost..... The rest of the world prefers sex over violence, does not want American women to be their role model for their women, and is sick of US propaganda regarding trafficking while the US is both the biggest producer of porn and greatest consumer of drugs on planet earth by far.

    April 22, 2011 at 5:36 am | Reply

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