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In 1999, Sweden became the first country to make it illegal to pay for sex, but not to be a prostitute (the client commits a crime, but not the prostitute).A similar law was passed in Norway and in Iceland (in 2009).In fact, sex workers are natural allies in the fight against trafficking.The UNAIDS Guidance Note on HIV and Sex Work recognizes that sex worker organizations are best positioned to refer people who are victims of trafficking to appropriate services." According to a 2007 report by the UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime), the most common destinations for victims of human trafficking are Thailand, Japan, Israel, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Turkey, and the US.Some feminist organizations are opposed to prostitution, considering it a form of exploitation in which males dominate women, and as a practice that is the result of a patriarchal social order.For example, the European Women's Lobby, which bills itself as the largest umbrella organization of women's associations in the European Union, has condemned prostitution as "an intolerable form of male violence".[the function of the criminal law is] to preserve public order and decency, to protect the citizen from what is injurious or offensive and to provide safeguards against the exploitation and corruption of others, ...
The Convention states that "prostitution and the accompanying evil of the traffic in persons for the purpose of prostitution are incompatible with the dignity and worth of the human person".
On top of these physical issues, it is also argued that there are psychological issues that prostitutes face from certain experiences and through the duration or repetition.
Some go through experiences that may result "in lasting feelings of worthlessness, shame, and self-hatred".
In February 2014, the members of the European Parliament voted in a non-binding resolution (adopted by 343 votes to 139; with 105 abstentions), in favor of the 'Swedish Model' of criminalizing the buying, but not the selling of sex.
In 2014, the Council of Europe has made a similar recommendation, stating that "While each system presents advantages and disadvantages, policies prohibiting the purchase of sexual services are those that are more likely to have a positive impact on reducing trafficking in human beings".Sigma Huda, a UN special reporter on trafficking in persons said: "For the most part, prostitution as actually practiced in the world usually does satisfy the elements of trafficking.