Belgium regularly reports hate crime data to ODIHR. Belgium's Criminal Code includes several penalty-enhancement provisions for specific offences. The data reported to ODIHR do not present cases of hate crime, incitement to hatred and discrimination separately. Hate crime data are collected by law enforcement agencies and the Prosecutor's Office. The Interfederal Centre for Equal Opportunities and against Racism (Unia) and the Institute for the Equality of Women and Men also monitor hate crimes.


Official Data

Year Hate crimes recorded by police Prosecuted Sentenced About these data
2017 875 60 56
2016 845 70 59
2015 881 69 56
2014 1064 76 61
2013 375 822 45

Hate crimes recorded by police

Numbers below represent all incidents recorded by the police and sent to the criminal prosecutor's office.

National developments

A committee of experts evaluated the Circular COL 13/2013, which provides a framework for addressing discrimination and hate crimes. While stating that the tool is adequate overall, the Committee noted under-reporting, high dismissal rates of the complaints received and occasional deficiencies in application of the Circular by police and prosecutors.

The law enforcement and justice bodies have collaborated with Unia, the equality body, on improvements to guidance for police and prosecutors on investigation, prosecution and recording of hate crimes, resulting in several regionally (Antwerp and Limburg) and locally (Mechelen) applicable guidelines.

The police have, in collaboration with LGBTI civil society organizations, worked to facilitate the reporting of hate crimes by the LGBTI community. Measures have included the development of a reporting app, the appointment of a special police contact mailbox (in the city of Ghent) and an emergency hotline. Structured consultation involving the police, Unia and CSOs has been taking place twice a year.

Key observation

ODIHR observes that Belgium has not reported on cases of hate crimes separately from cases of hate speech and/or discrimination.