The Human Truth Foundation

Human Rights, Equality and Freedom in Belarus

By Vexen Crabtree 2018


Comments:
FB, LJ

#Belarus #equality #freedom #human_rights #politics #tolerance

Belarus
Republic of Belarus

[Country Profile Page]
StatusIndependent State
CapitalMinsk
Land Area 202 910km21
LocationEurope
Population9.5m (2011)2
Life Expectancy71.46yrs (2017)3
GNI$15 629 (2017)4
ISO3166-1 CodesBY, BLR, 1125
Internet Domain.by6
CurrencyRuble (BYR)7
Telephone+3758

Belarus is generally poor at ensuring human rights and freedom compared to the rest of the world. Belarus does better than average in opposing gender inequality9, its nominal commitment to Human Rights10 and in LGBT equality11. Belarus does not succeed in everything, however. It does worse than average in fighting anti-semitic opinions12, its Global Peace Index rating13, fighting corruption14 and in supporting press freedom15. And finally, it falls into the bottom 20 in eliminating modern slavery16.


1. Politics and Freedom

#antisemitism #Belarus #burundi #corruption #eritrea #france #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #mass_media #peace #politics #slavery

The government continued its crackdown on civil society in 2017. Authorities carried out the broadest wave of arrests of peaceful protesters since 2010. For the first time in 10 years, authorities registered a political opposition movement, but restrictive legislation continues to prevent rights groups from registering and operating freely. No new political party has been able to register since 2000. Belarus remains the only European country to use the death penalty [...]. In July, a vaguely worded law on "protecting children from information harmful for their health and development" entered into force. These provisions may be used to restrict dissemination of neutral or positive information about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people as "discrediting the institution of the family". [...]

Laws and regulations governing public association remain restrictive, preventing human rights groups or political opposition movements from registering and operating freely. [... Amongst other incidents,] Police in Minsk raided the Human Rights Center "Viasna," detaining 58 people. A Viasna lawyer had to be hospitalized for a concussion he sustained due to police mistreatment. Authorities refused to open an investigation. [...]

The government continued to refuse to cooperate with United Nations [representatives on Human Rights] [even though] in June, Belarus submitted a report to the UN Human Rights Committee for the first time since 1996.

"World Report 2018" by Human Rights Watch (2018)17

Anti-Semite Opinions (2014)12
Pos.Lower is better
%12
1Laos0
2Philippines3
3Sweden4
...
66Azerbaijan37
67Ukraine38
68S. Africa38
69Belarus38
70Peru38
71Colombia41
72Hungary41
73Dominican Rep.41
World Avg36.8
q=101.
Corruption (2012-2016)14
Pos.Higher is better
Avg Score14
1Denmark90.8
2New Zealand90.6
3Finland89.4
...
113Ethiopia33.2
114Mexico32.8
115Ecuador32.6
116Belarus32.6
117Mali32.2
118Tanzania32.2
119Vietnam31.4
120Dominican Rep.31.4
World Avg43.05
q=176.
Global Peace Index (2012)13
Pos.Lower is better13
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
...
105Saudi Arabia2.18
106Haiti2.18
107Cambodia2.21
108Belarus2.21
109Uzbekistan2.22
110El Salvador2.22
111Egypt2.22
112Jamaica2.22
World Avg2.02
q=157.

Nominal Commitment to HR (2009)10
Pos.Higher is better
Treaties10
1Argentina24
2Chile23
3Costa Rica23
...
83Armenia17
84Egypt16
85Togo16
86Belarus16
87Seychelles16
88Tajikistan16
89Ghana16
90Belize16
World Avg15.1
q=194.
Press Freedom (2013)15
Pos.Lower is better15
1Finland638
2Netherlands648
3Norway652
...
153Turkey4656
154Swaziland4676
155Azerbaijan4773
156Belarus4835
157Egypt4866
158Pakistan5131
159Kazakhstan5508
160Rwanda5546
World Avg3249
q=178.

Between March and August, authorities detained at least 100 journalists, mostly while they were reporting on street protests, and sentenced at least 10 up to 15 days' detention on trumped-up charges. Police beat six of them. Authorities also prosecuted 20 journalists, for a total of 35 cases, for cooperating with unregistered foreign media, an increase since last year. All resulted insignificant, sometimes repeated, fines.

"World Report 2018" by Human Rights Watch (2018)17

Slavery (2018)16
Pos.Lower is better
% Victims16
1Japan0.03
2Canada0.05
3Taiwan0.05
...
145Thailand0.89
146Laos0.94
147Papua New Guinea1.03
148Belarus1.09
149Brunei1.09
150Myanmar (Burma)1.10
151Turkmenistan1.12
152Rwanda1.16
World Avg0.65
q=167.

In Belarus, we found abuse of civic duties in the practice of Subbotniks, which requires government employees to work weekends and donate their earnings to finance government projects under the intimidation or threat of fines.

"Global Slavery Index" by Walk Free Foundation (2018)18

The taking of slaves has been an unwholesome feature of Human cultures since prehistory19. Private households and national endeavours have frequently been augmented with the use of slaves. The Egyptian and Roman empires both thrived on them for both purposes. Aside from labourers they are often abused sexually by their owners and their owners' friends20. The era of colonialism and the beginnings of globalisation changed nothing: the imprisonment and forced movements of labour continued to destroy many lives except that new justifications were invented based on Christian doctrine and the effort to convert non-Christians. By 1786 over 12 million slaves had been extracted from Africa and sent to colonial labour camps, with a truly atrocious condition of life21. But they were not the only ones to blame; in Africa internal nations such as the Asantes sold and bought tens of thousands of slaves22.

The abolition of the slave trade was a long and slow process. Until a relatively modern time, even philosophers, religious leaders and those concerned with ethics justified, or ignored, the problem of slavery23. The first abolitionists were always the slaves themselves. Their protests and rebellions caused the industry to become too expensive to continue. After that, it was the economic costs of maintain slave colonies that led the British to reject and then oppose the slave trade globally. Finally, the enlightenment-era thinkers of France encouraged moral and ethical thinking including the declaration of the inherent value of human life and human dignity24. A long-overdue wave of compassionate and conscientious movements swept across the West, eliminating public support for slavery, until the industries and churches that supported it had no choice but to back down.

'Modern slavery' includes forced labour (often of the under-age), debt bondage (especially generational), sexual slavery, chattel slavery and other forms of abuse, some of which can be surprisingly difficult to detect, but often target those fleeing from warzones and the vulnerable.25. Some industries (diamond, clothing, coal) from some countries (Burundi16, Eritrea16, Indonesia26) are a particular concern. The Walk Free Foundation, say that in 2016, 40.3 million people were living in modern slavery27.

2. Gender Equality

#Belarus #gender #misogyny #politics #women

Gender Inequality (2015)9
Pos.Lower is better9
1Switzerland0.04
2Denmark0.04
3Netherlands0.04
...
29Estonia0.13
30Poland0.14
31Croatia0.14
32Belarus0.14
33Montenegro0.16
34New Zealand0.16
35Bosnia & Herzegovina0.16
36Macedonia0.16
World Avg0.36
q=159.
Year Women Can Vote28
Pos.Lower is better
Year28
1New Zealand1893
2Australia1902
3Finland1906
...
10Kyrgyzstan1918
11Austria1919
12Slovakia1919
13Belarus1919
14Germany1919
15Netherlands1919
16Ukraine1919
17Luxembourg1919
World Avg1930
q=189.

Gender inequality is not a necessary part of early human development. Although a separation of roles is almost universal due to different strengths between the genders, this does not have to mean that women are subdued, and, such patriarchialism is not universal in ancient history. Those cultures and peoples who shed, or never developed, the idea that mankind ought to dominate womankind, are better cultures and peoples than those who, even today, cling violently to those mores.

Belarus is on the way towards ending gender inequality and has been striving towards this end for quite some time.

See:

3. LGBT Equality and Tolerance

#Belarus #equality #homosexuality #human_rights #intolerance #sexuality #tolerance

LGBT Equality (2017)11
Pos.Higher is better
Score11
1Netherlands103
2Belgium90
3Sweden86
...
100Congo, DR15
101Lesotho15
102Belize15
103Belarus15
104Kyrgyzstan15
105Jordan12
106China12
107Djibouti11
World Avg12.6
q=196.

Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) folk is rife across the world. Legal restrictions co-exist alongside social stigmatisation and physical violence29. LGBT tolerance and equal rights have been fought for country-by-country across the world, often against tightly entrenched cultural and religious opposition. Homosexual activity is outlawed in around 80 countries29. The Social & Moral LGBT Equality Index was created to compare countries and regions, granting points to each country for a variety of factors including how long gay sex has been criminalized and the extent of LGBT legal rights. Graded negative points are given for criminality of homosexuality, unequal ages of consent, legal punishments and for not signing international accords on LGBT tolerance. The signs in many developed countries are positive, and things are gradually improving. Europe is by far the least prejudiced region (Scandinavia in particular being exemplary). The Middle East and then Africa are the least morally developed, where cultural bias goes hand-in-hand with state intolerance, all too often including physical violence.

4. Belarus Overall National and Social Development

#Belarus #human_development

Social & Moral
Development Index
30
Pos.Higher is better
Points30
1Denmark84.2
2Sweden83.7
3Finland83.5
...
99Vietnam51.9
100Nepal51.8
101Suriname51.7
102Belarus51.7
103Tunisia51.3
104China51.3
105St Lucia51.0
106India50.9
107St Vincent & Grenadines50.9
World Avg54.1
q=198.

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life.

Current edition: 2018 Sep 19
http://www.humantruth.info/belarus_human_rights_and_freedom.html
Parent page: Belarus (Republic of Belarus)

All #tags used on this page - click for more:

#antisemitism #Belarus #burundi #corruption #equality #eritrea #france #freedom #gender #homosexuality #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #intolerance #mass_media #misogyny #peace #politics #sexuality #slavery #tolerance #women

Social Media

References: (What's this?)

Anti-Defamation League. (ADL)
(2014) ADL Global 100, Executive Summary. Accessed on global100.adl.org on 2017 Jan 02. The numbers given are of those who state that racist stereotyped statements about Jews are true; they have to agree to 6 or more of the 11 statements to be counted. An example statements is "Jews are hated because of the way they behave". The data was collected from 53,100 interviews across 101 countries plus the West Bank and Gaza. The global average is 26%.

Casely-Hayford, Gus
(2012) The Lost Kingdoms of Africa. Published by Bantram Press. A hardback book.

Crabtree, Vexen
(2018) "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" (2018). Accessed 2018 Sep 19.

Donnelly, Jack
(2013) Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice. 3rd edition. Published by Cornell University Press.

Human Rights Watch
(2018) World Report 2018. Covering the events of 2017.

Klein, Naomi
(2004) No Logo. Originally published 2000, HarperCollins, London, UK. A paperback book.

McCall, Andrew
(1979) The Medieval Underworld. 2004 edition. Published by Sutton Publishing. A paperback book.

Thomson, Oliver
(1993) A History of Sin. Published by Canongate Press. A hardback book.

United Nations
(2011) Human Development Report. Published by the UN Development Programme. This edition had the theme of Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All. Available on hdr.undp.org/... UN Development Program: About the Human Development Index.
(2017) Human Development Report. Published by the UN Development Programme. Data for 2015. Available on hdr.undp.org/.

Walk Free Foundation
(2018) Global Slavery Index. Published on www.walkfreefoundation.org/.

Footnotes

  1. World Bank data on data.worldbank.org accessed 2013 Nov 04.^
  2. UN (2011) .^
  3. UN (2017). Table 1.^
  4. UN (2017). Gross National Income, per person. Table 1.^
  5. International Standards Organisation (ISO) standard ISO3166-1, on www.iso.org, accessed 2013 May 01.^
  6. Top level domains (TLDs) are managed by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) on www.iana.org.^
  7. According to ISO4217.^
  8. According to ITU-T.^
  9. UN (2017). Table 5. Lower is better.^^
  10. Max possible=24. Total amount of treaties ratified. Nominal Commitment to Human Rights report published by UCL School of Public Policy, London, UK, at ucl.ac.uk/spp/research/research-projects/nchr accessed 2011 Apr 30.^^
  11. Sources:^^
  12. ADL (2014). Lower is better.^^
  13. ^^
  14. Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (2017). Accessed 2017 Dec 30. The scores given are the TI average for the years 2012-2016.^^
  15. Reporters Without Borders Report "2013 World Press Freedom Index: Dashed hopes after spring" at fr.rsf.org/.../classement_2013_gb-bd.pdf accessed 2013 Feb.^^
  16. Walk Free Foundation (2018) .^^
  17. Human Rights Watch (2018). P72-75.^
  18. Walk Free Foundation (2018). P43.^
  19. Thomson (1993). P28.^
  20. McCall (1979). P180.^
  21. Thomson (1993). P166.^
  22. Casely-Hayford (2012). P253.^
  23. Thomson (1993). P31.^
  24. Thomson (1993). P199.^
  25. Thomson (1993). P28-29.^
  26. Klein (2004) .^
  27. Walk Free Foundation (2018). P2.^
  28. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life: 2.6. Women Stand for Election & Vote" by Vexen Crabtree (2018)^
  29. Donnelly (2013). Chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p278.^
  30. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" by Vexen Crabtree (2018)^

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