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Friday 18.01.2019 | Name days: Antis, Antons
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Ministry’s secretary: state of «permitted prostitution» in Latvia needs to change

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUProstitution in Latvia is «permissibly limited», but this needs to change, said Latvian Interior Affairs Ministry’s parliamentary secretary Evika Siliņa, during a speech at an international conference on effective measures against sexual exploitation.

Siliņa said people often ask her if prostitution in Latvia is permitted or not. This is a question that is not easily answered. She says basically prostitution in Latvia is «permissibly restricted».

The parliamentary secretary explains that it is because of this reason that Interior Affairs Ministry together with other ministries prepares changes so that this matter is regulated not only by government documents but also the law. The range of associated matters, the principles that were used until now, as well as differences in opinions make this discussion very complicated, said Siliņa.

At the same time, she stressed that the argument regarding the definition of prostitution is a thing of the past. She believes those who oppose banning prostitution should consider if any person has ever dreamed of becoming a prostitute and if there is even a choice to make in prostitution.

Siliņa is convinced that prostitution is incompatible with a person’s self-respect and honour. She adds that prostitution is particularly dangerous threat to society and family welfare.

Centrs Marta manager Iluta Lāce says it is unacceptable to live in a society that is not only indifferent to people in need but also gains income from those people.

Lāce says that that the argument that prostitution is the oldest profession in the world has no place in the 21st century. She adds that the real criminals – those who exploit other people – should be brought to justice.

She said that in Sweden, for example, the law is clearly turned against those who exploit other people, including who purchase «services». Multiple other countries, including France, which had adopted this approach several years ago, have followed this example.

Lāce says that Lithuania has commenced a discussion of Sweden’s model. Estonia has also started looking for different ways to reduce prostitution in the country. Latvia also needs a solution for this problem.

An international conference currently takes place in Stockholm School of Economics in Riga focused on combating sexual exploitation.

The objective of this conference is looking at different practices employed around the world and finding the most effective solutions to reduce sexual exploitation, improve protection of victims of sexual exploitation and increase criminal liability for those who sexually exploit others.


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