Screening of “She Is Not For Sale” at the European Public Law Organization
On July 22, 2020, the International United Nations Watch was hosted by the European Public Law Organization for the screening of the documentary “She Is Not For Sale” as part of their summer school program in Greece. The event took place a week prior to the UN’s World Day Against Trafficking. Guest speakers included Professor Giovanna Campani and Maya Garner, spokesperson for IUNW. Campani is Professor of Ethnology at the University of Florence and specializes in female migration in Europe, particularly the trafficking of women. The 50-min documentary investigates the world of sex trafficking from Europe to the Middle East and presents the case studies of Moldovan women trafficked to the United Arab Emirates. The screening was followed by a Q&A from students. The event was held as an online seminar out of COVID-19 considerations.
The report “A Journey to the Unknown: Trafficking at the Fringe of Europe,” commissioned by the IUNW, contextualizes the documentary and was presented as a complement to the film. The report includes contributions from Professor Campani and Garner, as well as La Strada and the Mediterranean Migration Observatory. In the discussion after the screening, Garner emphasized that the film is unique for being made by people residing in the Middle East who took it upon themselves to investigate the case of trafficking to their own countries in the Gulf, seeking out the origins of the eastern European victims. The discussion also included questions of the role of international law, and Campani underlined the challenges to its enforcement in a sovereign state.
Campani furthermore touched on how trafficking networks take place despite European law. She stated that in a country such as the UAE, where the government has such a high degree of control over its population, it is a sign of a lack of political will to shut down the “mafia” type of trafficking networks that exist there. She explained how tacit government concurrence with sex trafficking ties into a larger picture of migrant rights in the Gulf. Garner mentioned the larger social structures that pave the way for trafficking, such as the high emigration rates in Moldova, economic difficulties, and traffickers preying on victims with a history of abuse in their home lives. Garner also touched on the work by IUNW to expand on the film and report into a wider campaign against sex trafficking from Europe to the Middle East.