The international community has long recognized that all people are born free and equal in their dignity and rights. Belarus positions itself as a part of this community and, together with other countries, has signed international documents protecting its citizens against any type of discrimination. Article 2 of the Belarusian Constitution says explicitly that, “the individual is of supreme importance to society and the State” and that “the State shall be responsible for creating conditions for the free and dignified development of his identity”. The Constitution also prohibits inciting social, national, religious and racial hatred.
However, in practice it is not always complied with. To this day there are social groups in Belarus, whose rights the government and society refuse to defend. These include the milieus of Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgenders (LGBT). Discrimination based on sexual orientation violates human dignity and rights.
Some offences or cases of discrimination arising from homophobia that occur in Belarus are ignored by the authorities, media and public opinion leaders. The situation of gays, bisexuals and transgenders is ambiguous. There is insufficient legislation to defend them against discrimination. And although no direct threats are made against that milieu, the society is usually ill-disposed towards it. Most Belarusians feel aversion or indifference towards homosexuals. Only a handful support lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals in their fight for the possibility of adoption or carrying out peaceful demonstrations. Opinions are often expressed that homosexuals should not speak about their sexual orientation or organize mass events. Religious organizations, the government, as well as the opposition, and most people treat such events held by the LGBT community as a propaganda for homosexuality.
The complete text can be downloaded here in English.