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Sex workers face ruin amid virus fears, brothel closures

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Posted at 1:03 PM, Mar 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-17 14:03:41-04

BERLIN (AP) — Sex for sale has long been a staple part of Berlin's freewheeling nightlife, but amid concerns over the new coronavirus even the world's supposedly oldest profession is being hit by a sudden slump.

The German capital has registered 332 confirmed cases of COVID-19 so far and several dozen infections have been traced to bars and clubs. Berlin authorities on Saturday ordered the temporary closure of all entertainment venues, including brothels. But with more than two-thirds of sex workers unregistered, it wasn't immediately clear how and whether this would be effective in stopping that avenue of possible transmission.

Meanwhile, industry insiders say sex workers face ruin if the lockdown lasts more than a few weeks.

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