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U.S. Statement at the Universal Periodic Review of Antigua and Barbuda
May 9, 2016

UPR 25th Session, Geneva, May 9, 2016
As delivered by Divya Khosla

The United States warmly welcomes the delegation from Antigua and Barbuda to the UPR Working Group.

 We note actions taken by Antigua and Barbuda which demonstrate dedication to respect for human rights, including efforts to eliminate violence and discrimination against persons with HIV/AIDS, especially among the police forces.

 While we recognize administrative efforts to provide prisoners with adequate complaint mechanisms, we remain concerned about the harsh, overcrowded conditions in Her Majesty’s Prison.

We are also concerned with the high incidence of violence against women, especially spousal abuse and sexual harassment.

Lastly, we remain concerned about the existence of laws that criminalize same-sex sexual activity between consenting adults.

Bearing in mind these concerns, we recommend that Antigua and Barbuda:

  1. Build enough housing facilities so offenders under the age of 18 are housed separately from the general prison population.
  2. Pass legislation explicitly defining and prohibiting sexual harassment in the public and private sectors, with protections against retaliation for those who report.
  3. Reform the penal code to decriminalize private, same-sex sexual activity between consenting adults.

(end statement)