Thank you Mr. President,
Norway warmly welcomes the delegation of Barbados and would like to thank the delegation for the presentation of the national report. Norway notes with satisfaction that Barbados has taken several steps to follow up recommendations that were accepted during the last review, notable in the fields of decent work, gender equality and the intention to establish a national human rights institution.
Norway would encourage the Government of Barbados to move forward in several key areas in order to meet international human rights standards.
Norway is opposed to the use of capital punishment under all circumstances and accordingly aims at its universal abolition. We note that Barbados retains the death penalty, although there have been no executions since 1984. We therefore recommend Barbados to consider abolishing the death penalty.
Norway is concerned that corporal punishment, especially of children, still occurs in Barbados and would recommend the Government to prohibit this practice.
Norway regrets that consensual same-sex conduct is criminalized in Barbados according to the Sexual Offences Act. Norway is aware of the fact that sectors of the population is opposed to change this legal provision but would like to state that religious or cultural beliefs cannot be used to criminalize intimacy between consenting adults. Norway thus recommends Barbados to repeal all provisions that criminalize same-sex conduct.