Belarus is more homophobic than most countries in Europe, but situation with the rights of LGBT people is even worse in Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. The level of equality of LGBT people and respect for their rights in Belarus is estimated at 13% of 100% in the latest version of 2017 Rainbow Europe rating.
There are only six countries that rank lower than Belarus: San Marino (12%), Monaco (10%), Turkey (9%), Armenia (7%), Russia (6%) and Azerbaijan (5%).
“A number of legislative changes took place in 2016, although it was not immediately obvious how their provisions would impact on the lives of LGBTI people in Belarus. A potentially positive amendment was made to the Criminal Code, introducing the ofence of inciting hatred on the ground of ‘social hatred’. At the time of the change in April, activists suggested that this might be interpreted to include LGBTI people,” the report notes.
However, no precedent had been set by the end of the year, it adds.
Belarus scored best in the legal gender recognition category (52%), but received o% in asylum, equality and non-discrimination and hate crime and hate speech categories.
The authors of the rating assess the situation in each country both from the legal point of view and from the point of view of social attitude. The evaluation takes place across six categories: asylum, equality and non-discrimination, hate crime and hate speech, family, legal gender recognition and bodily integrity, civil society space.
The countries are then ranked on a scale of 0% (serious violations of human rights, discrimination) to 100% (respect for human rights, full equality).
The most tolerant European countries towards representatives of LGBT communities are Malta (88%), Norway (78%) and the UK (76%).