Swedish authorities have asked the female refugees from Ukraine not to dress in a way that could provoke men from other cultures [read Muslim men] who also live at Galaxen housing facility. It may be mentioned here that at the height of the Syrian war and subsequent massive influx of Muslim refugees, the number of Swedes reporting to have been victims of sexual crimes, including rapes has tripled between 2014 and 2018, according to the
Swedish Crime Prevention Council Brå.
The instruction has prompted one women’s shelter to start informing Ukrainian women of their rights.
In 2016, Swedish Left Party politician Barbro Sörman stated that it was “worse” when Swedish men raped women than when “immigrants” did it; this was an insult to all immigrants and a slap in the face to all Swedes. Her reasoning: Swedish men make an active choice while “come from cultures where women are treated as second-rate citizens”.
Commenting on Swedish authorities latest advice to the Ukrainian female refugees, counterterrorism expert Christine Douglass-Williams said: “It is atrocious that Ukrainian women are being told to be careful how they dress in a way “that could provoke Muslim men”, rather than Sweden implementing a no-tolerance policy on Muslim migrants attacking infidel women”.
Gitana Bengtsson, who has been helping refugees, reacted to the “advice” from the refugee housing management and made sure to connect with a women’s shelter.
“I have talked to a woman from the women’s shelter in Olofström. She said that we should go there and have an informative meeting for the women”,
Bengtsson told Swedish Radio.
“So that if they feel unsafe, they can call, and they should feel safe. Tell them a little about their rights and where they can turn”, she added.
Answering how Ukrainian women dressed before being told to change, Bengtsson said that “they usually dressed like us, you and me.”
“There is nothing strange about it. They did not look like prostitutes. If those women lived in the city, no one would tell them how to dress,” added Bengtsson.
The site manager at the accommodation had reportedly told the women that they should not wear light clothing that makes body parts visible, such as short shorts or skirts.
There have been numerous reports of some Ukrainian women who sought refuge in Sweden feeling unsafe in their new surroundings because of attempts by migrant males to break into their accommodation.
In March, the Swedish news outlet Samnytt spoke with female Ukrainian refugees residing in the town of Örebro following an incident where foreign males entered their homes and tried to attack them.
“They said that Sweden was a safe country, but I have not seen that”, one of the women told Swedish public radio.
But there is other side of the story!
According to media reports, a large number of Ukrainian females who are entering European nations are prostitutes, escorts and drug peddlers and have been continuing such activities immediately on landing into their desired destination. One house owner in Ireland complained, an Ukrainian female who took shelter at her house under the disguise of refugee was actually a member of Ukrainian escort network and began selling sex to clients within hours of getting shelter. The Irish house owner felt surprised and even expressed fear as this Ukrainian female would spoil the atmosphere of the locality and give her a bad name. It is learnt that similar incidents are taking place with Ukrainian female refugees in other parts of the European countries.
Ukraine has the second largest HIV epidemic in eastern Europe and central Asia, with an estimated 250,000 people living with HIV. These rates have, in a large part, been spurred by militarization and conflict in the country, factors which have disproportionally affected women, increasing their vulnerability to HIV infection and exposing them to stigma, marginalization and violence.
In 2016, Ukraine had a population of 80,100 women sex workers, with 5.2 percent HIV positive. This percentage increased vastly in conflict areas and was estimated to be as high as 38.2 percent in Donetsk. Displacement, destruction and deterioration of the economy caused by war, leave many women, without a home or income.
Prostitution is therefore one of the only available means to make a living, especially for working-class women who have often not had access to education. Their precarious situation also heightens the risk of exploitation and trafficking.
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