A prostitute waits for customers along a road..
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The State Prosecutor's Office on Monday announced that they will stop prosecuting brothels as long as they are owned and operated by the women who work in them, according to The Jewish Chronicle.
The decision, made under the auspices of the Justice Ministry, was announced in light of an ongoing case being litigated in the Tel Aviv civil court. The judge overseeing the case, Itay Harmelin, said in response that the decision would help "get working women off the streets” and shield them from violent pimps and police harassment.
Prostitution in Israel is legal, but pimping and brothels remain outside the law, and new legislation proposing to persecute only patrons of the sex trade is making its way through the Knesset.
However, little political support exists for further expanding the legal parameters concerning the "oldest profession in the world," and women's rights organizations have come out against the plan.
The Public Security Ministry, headed up by the Likud's Gilad Erdan, gave its consent on the proposal on condition that the ministry would receive more resources to enforce the new regulations.