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Concluding Observations, CCPR/C/LVA/CO/3, 25 March 2014: Latvia

19. The Committee is concerned at reports of racist speech, acts of violence and discrimination against vulnerable groups, including Roma and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons, and at a reported increase in incidents of violence against minorities in recent years. The Committee is also concerned at the inadequate application of the legislative framework against hate crime with respect to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons. The Committee is furthermore concerned at allegations of insufficient hate crime recording, monitoring, investigation and prosecution (arts. 20 and 26).

The State party should:

(a) Strengthen its strategies to fight against racially motivated crimes and counter the use of racist discourse in politics and in the media;

(b) Implement criminal law provisions aimed at combating racially motivated crimes, punish perpetrators with appropriate penalties and facilitate the reporting procedure for hate crimes;

(c) Define incitement to violence on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity as a criminal offence.

Link to full text of the report: Concluding Observations-CCPR-Latvia-2014-eng