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Trafficking of young women 

Dear Editor,

Sirs, I recently read your interesting paper whilst on holiday and noted the article concerning the trafficking of young women by criminal gangs to the islands of Tenerife and Gran Canaria. Your islands are not alone with this problem- it is endemic all over the world and the victims tend to be uneducated, or come from ecomonically deprived countries. The sad reality is that these women are raped daily by men who pay for sex. They are exploited not only by their criminal controllers but by the men who rape them without a thought for their dignity or human rights. Then, I turned to your Classified section and saw many adverts there for the services of prostitutes. There is clearly a lively sex trade in the Canaries. I do wonder though, if either you as the newspaper publisher, or the men who use these prostitutes can ever be sure that the women involved are not the victims of traffickers? How can you tell, I wonder? Are either of your needs – for advertising income, or sex, being met by an unwilling, unhappy, fragile girls, whose work is a daily torment to them.

I would like to think that my comments above are published as a letter in Tenerife News, but I would also welcome your editorial reply on the subject.


Sylvia Fox


Editor’s reply

Many thanks for your letter and observations.

Firstly, we are happy to publish your letter as we do believe in freedom of speech.

We obviously share your concern about human trafficking and exploitation of women and indeed publish regular articles on this subect, both to highlight this problem and to serve as a general warning. We do agree that it is so sad that this is still happening in a modern world.

Regarding our advertisements in the Tenerife News, we are as confident as we can be that all are genuine adverts as we are sure that anyone involved in coercion would not voluntarily publish details in the paper for the police to follow up. We are aware that the police do keep regular checks on these prostitutes who are un-derstood to be working legitimately and the police are very aware of their locations.

Prostitution in Spain is a permitted activity, though pimping is not, and attitudes in Spain are more liberal.

With regard to our advertisements, again these are permitted and you will find that all the newspapers in Spain carry them. Some readers might find them offensive but we receive few complaints and they are within the newspaper code of practice.

Tenerife News Editor