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By adam on Oct 1st, 2006

Sex Work is illegal in Albania. The Penal Code anticipates a punishment varying from a simple fine up to three years of detention for persons practicing commercial sex.
Excerpt from a study made by the Albanian Institute for Public Health and Aksion Plus, SWAN Member from Albania, on sex work situation in this South-East European country. Edited by SWAN News
Sex work is a relatively new phenomenon in Albania, dating from the early nineties. According to some reports from Albanian police and juridical system, almost 70% of female sex workers in and from this country have been dragged into the business forcibly and/or by fraud, through marriages “for a better life” abroad. Trafficked are usually girls from rural areas, from families with very difficult financial situation. Trafficking is managed by organized crime syndicates whose interests are spread across Europe. Although the fight of the state against human trafficking has been more effective in the recent years, partly due to the better international cooperation with the specialized bodies in the receiving countries, human trafficking for sex work is still considered the most “lucrative” crime, and Albania became one of the traffic routes from ex Soviet Union countries towards Western Europe.
Not all sex workers are trafficked. Sex work is a free choice of those sex workers who engage in the business as a result of the very difficult economical situation in the country. More

By adam on Sep 30th, 2006
By olga on Aug 1st, 2006

On September 6-10, the first SWAN Network meeting was held in Budapest, Hungary. It was an opportunity for the SWAN Members to meet and get to know each other as well as to discuss the future of the Network. It was also a learning opportunity – part of the meeting was a seminar on working with media and advocacy for rights of sex workers. Participating were representatives of SWAN-member NGOs from 15 countries, as well as the technical coordinators of SWAN from the Hungarian Civil Liberty Union. Special guests were Rachel Thomas from the Sexual Health and Rights Program (SHARP) of the Open Society Institute in New York (www.soros.org), and Petra Timmermans, Coordinator of the International Committee on the Rights of Sex Workers in Europe, an organization based in Amsterdam (ICRSE, www.sexworkeurope.org).