MIA recommendations on how to prosecute hate crimes


2020 01 28


Criminal act motivated by hatred and/or bias towards a group or a person based on age, gender, sexual orientation, disability, race, nationality, language, origin, social status, religion, beliefs or views significantly threatens democratic values, public security and the existence of a pluralistic society.

First of all, these offences violate the constitutional value – the principle of equality. Besides, such crimes divide society and increase discord, which can escalate into active discrimination or even physical coping.

The duty of the state to effectively investigate hate and/or bias-based crimes derives from the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, and also from the case-law of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR).

At the request Ministry of the Interior, there were developed recommendations on the application of criminal liability for hate crimes and hate speech.

The recommendations are based on research, case-law, and feedback and evaluations from European Union institutions and international organizations.


The recommendations were developed within the framework of the project “Strengthening Response to Hate Crime and Hate Speech in Lithuania” funded by the European Union’s Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme (2014-2020). Project partners: Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Lithuania (coordinator), Prosecutor General's Office of the Republic of Lithuania and Office of Inspector of Journalist Ethics.


Funded by the European Union’s Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme (2014-2020).




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