Hate Speech in Lithuania – FAQ (2013)

November 14, 2013

In November 2013, HRMI released English version of the informational guide “Hate Speech in Lithuania: Frequently Asked Questions”.

In recent years, public discussion about the hate speech has intensified. Successful legislative initiatives to ban public denial of genocide and the Soviet aggression perpetrated against Lithuania and the first lawsuits have caused ambiguous response. Each month, the media reports on cases opened against Internet commenters. Such articles are accompanied by the new wave of hatred and discontent regarding the restriction of the freedom of expression.

What hate speech is, and how is it expressed in Lithuania? Is Lithuania the only state to restrict its citizens’ right to freedom of expression? Can the right of expression be limited in the first place? Who are targeted by demeaning words, and who those commenters behind anonymous nicknames usually are? How should one respond to the incident of hate speech? “Hate Speech in Lithuania: Frequently Asked Questions” seeks to provide answers to those and many other questions. The informational guide was originally released in Lithuanian, in 2011, updated in 2013.