kerrySecretary of State John F. Kerry today issued the 2015 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices (commonly known as the Human Rights Reports) to the U.S. Congress. The report includes the status of human rights conditions in 199 countries and territories around the world including Belize and highlights the intensified global crackdown by the U.S. on societies that restricts the operating space for human rights.

The executive summary for Belize's most recent Human Rights Report states that Belize's most important human rights abuses include the use of excessive force by security forces (particularly the police), lengthy pre-trial detention, and harassment and threats based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Among the countries listed in the report as worst countries on human rights were Syria and Afghanistan and in the secretary’s preface, he highlights grim examples of violation of human rights in those countries such as denial of free speech and expression by jailing reporters for writing critical stories, or sharply restricting or closing non-governmental organizations for promoting supposedly foreign ideologies such as universal human rights.

According to Secretary John Kerry the report highlights their commitment to promoting and protecting universal human rights, to supporting and defending civil society in its peaceful efforts to hold governments accountable, and to working with partners to advance peace, development, human rights, and democracy. 

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