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Historical/political snapshot (Wikipedia): Turkey, officially the Republic of Turkey, is a contiguous transcontinental parliamentary republic largely located in Western Asia with the smaller portion of Eastern Thrace in Southeastern Europe.

Human Rights 2015: an overview by Amnesty International

HIV/AIDS rates: There are 5,500 people living with HIV in Turkey (2011)

HIV prevalence among sex workers: There is no information regarding HiV/AIDS rates among sex workers in the country.

Legal situation around sex work: Sex work is legal. Laws around sex work are problematic. Sex work itself is not a crime, however any step taken to be able to do sex work is a crime.

Turkish Penal Code punishes:

  • providing space for prostitution,
  • encouraging a person to prostitution,
  • pimping.

In addition to this, Charter on STIs and Preventing Prostitution regulates sex work in the country, designing where sex work can be done and where not. Registered brothels are places where registered sex workers can work legally, BUT to work legally sex worker have to be TURKISH CITIZEN, WOMAN and NOT married. Apart from this, working at home, clubs, massage parlours, streets is banned with this Charter. Houses are raided, clubs, parlours are closed down or street sex workers are applied fines to prevent this. Law on Misdemeanors is used for administrative fines.

Services for sex workers: The only service for sex workers is the legal service provided by Red Umbrella. Government has not provided any legal, psychological, medical, etc. services for sex workers. Global Fund does not sponsor Turkey. Red Umbrella is the only registered organization with clear references to sex workers rights. There are very few trans groups which support sex workers rights however do not have any sex work-specific advocacy work.

Sex workers' movement:

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By admin on Dec 17th, 2013

A short video produced by Red Umbrella Sexual Health and Human Rights Association Turkey, a member of SWAN, on the occasion of 17 December 2013, in order to bring attention to the violence that sex workers experience in Turkey.


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