Santo Domingo.– Some 8,000 Dominican women work as prostitutes in Suriname, where they are ill-treated and exploited, according to the results of an investigation presented Thursday in this capital.
According to a report by Spanish news agency EFE, Dominican women represent virtually 100 percent of the sex workers in Suriname, a country of some 223,000 inhabitants.
The "Trinational Investigation into the Treatment and Trafficking of Women" and COIN research institute revealed that between 4,000 and 5,000 Dominican women are forced to engage in prostitution in Suriname in largely clandestine transactions in which they are maltreated, raped and sometimes even disappear for good.
The big lie of the (sex) traders (i.e. pimps) is to feed in Dominican women great expectations, which they never fulfill," since –she said– "economic earnings are scarce".
The great illusion of the prostitutes is, she added, that they may be able to marry a rich Surinamese man, "it doesn't matter if he's a drug trafficker, a politician or a man with four wives living in different houses which he throws out when he gets tired of them."
COIN said in the study that the Dominicans usually work in clandestine locations, "much more hidden and dangerous" and it added that some Dominicans have disappeared in Suriname but those cases have not been investigated by the authorities.
The heads of COIN, Santo Rosario and Francisca Ferreiras, asked the governments of the Dominican Republic,and Suriname to establish policies and programs to protect the rights of the women who are victims of the sex trade.
Rosario said that some women gravitate to prostitution because of poverty and the inequality of the sexes and she complained that the immigration laws, approved to combat the crime of people selling and trafficking, "make the problem clandestine and invisible and make it so that the women suffer more."
This reality, Rosario said, "demands the establishment of policies of labor integration and the authorization of microloans so that poor women can find work in conditions of equality in their society of origin."
Rosario also said that Suriname is a transit and destination country for the sex trade due to the economic flows generated by its mines and casinos and because some women can cross the border to French Guiana or emigrate to France, Martinique or Guadeloupe.
According to data compiled by local organizations, more than 400,000 Dominican women work as prostitutes outside their homeland.