Albania: Parliament Legalizes Homosexuality

On 20 January 1995, the Albanian parliament legalized homosexual relations, doing away with Article 137 of the old Penal Code, under which simply "being homosexual" could be punished by up to 10 years in prison. Shoqata Gay Albania, Albania's first and only gay and lesbian organization, had been formed illegally in March 1994. On 14 October 1994 three men suspected of being members of the group were arrested up and severely beaten by the Albanian police in an apparent effort to secure the name of the group's president.