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Peaceful Assembly

Protests and demonstrations, albeit mostly small-scale, are relatively common in Belize. They address a wide range of issues and often take place in the capital, Belmopan. Article 13 of the constitution extends the right to assemble to ‘persons’, meaning that foreigners also have the right to gather peacefully in public in Belize. Read more


Association

In practice, most civil society organisations, including those promoting human rights, operate freely. However, organisations promoting the rights of LGBTI people can face societal and legal discrimination. Read more


Belize-Overview

People in Belize enjoy conditions in which there is a healthy respect for civic space, which is protected in law and in practice. Some groups, including the indigenous Maya people, do however experience marginalisation and discrimination. Read more


Belgium-Overview

Recent terrorist attacks on Belgian soil raised concerns that Belgium’s longstanding protections for civil liberties could be weakened, as Belgium’s leaders approved greater powers to detain suspects and track communications in March 2016. Generally however people in Belgium are free to form associations to advance collective interests, to gather peacefully in public places and to share ideas, opinions and information freely. Read more


Expression

Barbados has a healthy respect for free speech and a vibrant media space ensures that people have access to a range of views and opinions. Like most Caribbean countries, defamation remains a criminal offence in Barbados and the punishment for libel is imprisonment of up to 12 months or a fine, although actual use of these laws appears to be rare. Read more


Peaceful Assembly

Protests are relatively frequent in Barbados and usually peaceful – recent protests have addressed a range of issues including unfair dismissal of workers, opposition to a new government tax and a hike in student fees. Barbados’ laws on public gatherings fall short of international standards and best practices related to peaceful assembly. Read more


Association

The constitution of Barbados, in Article 21, provides that nobody can be deprived of the right to ‘associate with other persons’ and form ‘associations for the protection of his interests’. The only exceptions to this rule occur when it is ‘reasonably required’ for ‘defence, public safety, public order, public morality or public health’ or the protection of the rights of others. Read more


Barbados-Overview

Civic space is broadly respected in Barbados, which retains a healthy democratic tradition with free and fair elections and a strong rule of law. Civil society organisations are free to operate in practice and to promote a variety of causes. Read more


Expression

While press freedom is generally respected in the Bahamas, increased tension during elections can lead to some pressure on private media. There have also been some isolated threats against the media, and in late 2013 a live hand grenade was found on the premises of The Punch, a privately-owned tabloid newspaper. Read more


Peaceful Assembly

The right to gather in public to protest and demonstrate peacefully is provided for in the constitution and is generally respected in practice in the Bahamas. Protests concern a range of economic and social issues, including workers’ grievances and opposition to government policies and actions. Read more