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Spain, Hate crimes grew by 3.7% in 2022

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Grande-Marlaska (Spain’s Minister of Interior) presented the ‘Report on the Evolution of hate crimes in Spain 2022’ during the meeting of the 2nd Follow-up Commission of the 2nd Action Plan to Combat Hate Crimes 2022-2024.

According to the report, the State Security Forces cleared up 63 per cent of the facts and arrested or investigated 838 people.

Racism/xenophobia offences were the most numerous (755), and those related to sex/gender discrimination were the ones that increased the most compared to the previous year (77%).

The State Security Forces and Corps investigated a total of 1,869 criminal offences and hate incidents in Spain in 2022, an increase of 3.7 per cent over 2021. This is stated in the ‘Report on the evolution of hate crimes in Spain 2022’, presented on Wednesday by the Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska.

The minister explained these data during the meeting of the 2nd Follow-up Commission of the “2nd Action Plan to Combat Hate Crimes 2022-2024“, where the report was presented. The report was drawn up by the National Office for Combating Hate Crimes (Ondod) based on data provided to the Statistical Crime System (SEC) by the National Police, Guardia Civil, Ertzaintza, Mossos d’Esquadra, Policía Foral de Navarra and local police.

The report is available at the following link, in the Balances and Reports 2022 section of the Ministry of the Interior’s website.

Grande-Marlaska recalled that hate crimes constitute “a frontal and direct attack” on the principles of freedom, respect for people’s dignity and the rights that form the basis of the social and democratic rule of law. “Acting against hate crimes helps to improve the coexistence of a multicultural society made up of different people and, as a direct consequence, helps us to live in a better society,” he said.

RACISM AND XENOPHOBIA, ARE THE MOST NUMEROUS HATE CRIMES.

Hate crimes due to racism and xenophobia, with 755 incidents, are the most numerous and represent 43.5 per cent of the total number of complaints. This is followed by hate crimes committed in the areas of sexual orientation and gender identity (459 incidents), while ideological hate crimes come in third place (245 incidents).

In terms of year-on-year variation, hate crimes for discrimination on the grounds of sex and gender are the ones that suffer the greatest increase, 76.6 per cent more than in 2021. Also noteworthy is the increase in aporophobic crimes, which grew by 70 per cent, and anti-Gypsyism, which increased by 22.2 per cent.

In the comparison with 2021, crimes for generational discrimination (57.1 per cent), for reasons of illness (47.6 per cent), for religious beliefs or practices (25.4 per cent) and for ideology (24.8 per cent) decreased significantly.

In terms of the types of offences involved in these hate crimes, the most common were injuries (423) and threats (338), followed by insults (116) and damage (106).

By autonomous communities, the Basque Country has the highest number of complaints (407), followed by Catalonia (253), the Community of Madrid (237) and Andalusia (207).

PROFILES OF VICTIMS AND THOSE INVESTIGATED AND ARRESTED.

The report presented this year indicates that the State Security Forces cleared up 63 per cent of the facts in 2022 and arrested or investigated 838 people.

The main victims of this type of crime are men (59.4 per cent), while the most affected age group is between 26 and 40 years of age (31.3 per cent). Minors make up 12.1 per cent of all victimisations.

As for the distribution of victims according to nationality, the first place is occupied by Spanish victims, with 60.9 per cent of the total number of victimisations registered. Within the group of victims of foreign nationality, those from Morocco registered the highest number (9.9 per cent), ahead of Colombia (3.3 per cent) and Senegal (2.1 per cent).

The number of persons arrested/investigated for hate crimes and incidents amounted to 838 persons, the majority of whom were male (79 per cent) and aged between 26 and 40, representing 27.6 per cent of the total.

MONITORING OF THE SECOND ACTION PLAN AGAINST HATE CRIME.

During the second meeting of the Monitoring Commission for the Second Action Plan to Combat Hate Crimes 2022-2024, the minister highlighted “the transversal approach” of the plan, which has improved cooperation between the institutions involved and the third sector “and has placed the victim at the centre of attention, both to ensure their protection and to contribute to the reparation of the crime”.

Along these lines, Grande-Marlaska specified that reparation should not be understood from a purely material point of view. “We must think about moral redress, which may be even more important for the victim, as their dignity, freedom or free development in equal conditions and opportunities have been attacked,” he said.

In his speech, the minister also highlighted “the great involvement” of the Security Forces in the prevention and fight against hate crimes, and expressly referred to the creation of “specific and specialised police groups”, such as the National Police’s Violent Extremism and Hate Team (EVO), and the Civil Guard’s Hate Crime Response Teams (REDO).

At this point, Grande-Marlaska reported on the agreement signed between the Ministry of the Interior and the Spanish Federation of Municipalities and Provinces (FEMP) to channel collaboration and coordination between the National Police, Civil Guard and local police in aspects such as the identification, collection and codification of racist, xenophobic incidents and crimes or discriminatory behaviour, as well as guaranteeing proper care and assistance to victims of hate crimes.

The meeting of the Monitoring Commission was attended, on behalf of the Ministry of the Interior, by the Secretary of State for Security, Rafael Pérez, the Director General for Coordination and Studies, José Antonio Rodríguez, as well as Ondod staff.

Also taking part was the public prosecutor for hate crimes and discrimination, Miguel Ángel Aguilar; the director of the Observatory against Racism and Xenophobia (Oberaxe), Karoline Fernández; the deputy director of the Pluralism and Convivence Foundation, Inés Mazarrasa; and the director general of Organisation and Resources of the Spanish Federation of Municipalities and Provinces, María Eugenia Simarro.

In addition, representatives of the State Security Forces and Corps and regional police forces took part, as well as representatives of eight associations from the third sector: the Spanish Committee of Representatives of People with Disabilities (CERMI), Movement against Intolerance, Council of Victims of Hate Crimes, Observatory against Homophobia of Catalonia, Agents of the Authority for Diversity (LGTBIpol), Federation of Gypsy Women’s Associations (Fakali), Islamic Board and the Observatory for Religious Freedom and Freedom of Conscience.

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