Prostitution under International Human Rights Law: An Analysis of States’ Obligations and the Best Ways to Implement Them

The Coalition for the Abolition of Prostitution (CAP international) is an affiliation of fourteen front line NGOs providing assistance to prostituted persons and victims of human trafficking in human beings for the purpose of prostitution. CAP international and its members stand in support of all women, men and children affected by prostitution and in opposition to the system that exploits their precariousness and vulnerabilities.The purpose of this position paper is:

• to present the current human rights legislative framework and the obligations arising under international law with regards to prostitution and its exploitation

• to define the best ways for States to implement their obligations in respect of human rights

This paper deliberately focuses on international legislation and constituent principles frameworks, and in doing so draws two main conclusions:

1. International human rights law recognises prostitution as a violation of human rights and prohibits its exploitation.

2. The only way for States to respect their obligation to elimi-nate the exploitation of prostitution in respect of human rights is to implement abolitionist policies.

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