Thursday, June 24, 2010

Clinton Speaks Against Homophobia in Albania

Bravo to US State Secretary Hillary Clinton for shining a light on the continued maltreatment of gays on Albania. It seems that even with the advent of democracy back in 1990, gays suffer the same, no-change discriminations they underwent during the brutal Enver Hoxha communist regime!


Clinton Speaks Against Homophobia in Albania
Tirana | 24 June 2010 |

As part of a speech made in celebration of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) month US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke in support of an Albanian gay man who came out publicly during a popular reality show.

"In Albania, a young man named Klodian Cela recently came out on a popular television program called Big Brother and soon after, our ambassador, John Withers, went on television to publicly express support for this man,” said Clinton during her speech.

“He visited his hometown and he invited him to an event at our Embassy, conveying to all Albanians that the United States supports his rights and respects his courage," Clinton added.

Cela’s expression of his sexual orientation on the show in February provoked a series of small protests in his hometown of Lezha, in northern Albania, which were condemned by Ambassador Withers and various rights groups.

The Albanian parliament approved in February a sweeping anti-discrimination law that includes protection of the rights of sexual minorities, winning praise from activists.

Although the new anti-discrimination did not include a provision that legalizes same-sex unions, as previously proposed by Prime Minister Sali Berisha, activists applauded it as a step forward for the gay community.

While the Albanian parliament decriminalised homosexual relations in 1995, more than a decade later gays and lesbians are still heavily stigmatised, and a majority hide their sexual orientation, fearing that if it is discovered their safety will be endangered.

Human rights reports on Albania concede that ingrained attitudes among the public leave Albanian gays and lesbians on the fringes of society. Albanian Human Rights Group reports that Albanian homosexuals face “intolerance, physical and psychological violence - often from the police - and discrimination in the workplace.”


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home