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Belize has detailed counterterrorism legislation from 2008. To constitute terrorism, a predicate offence must be not only to intimidate the public or compel government conduct, but must also be for the purpose of advancing a political, religious, racial, or ideological cause. There is no carve-out for the exercise of fundamental human rights.

Compliance with International Law:
Last updated: one year ago

The Definition of Terrorism in Domestic Law

“Terrorism” and “terrorist act" are defined in the Section 2C(1) of the 2008 Money Laundering and Terrorism (Prevention) Act as follows:

the action or threat of action where—

(a) the action—

     (i) constitutes an offence within the scope of a counter terrorism convention listed in the Fourth Schedule to this Act; or

     (ii) falls within subsection (2);

(b) subject to subsection (3), the use or threat of action is intended, or by its nature and context, may reasonably be regarded as being intended, to—

     (i) influence the government of any country or part of a country, or an international organisation; or 

     (ii) intimidate the public or section of the public; and

(c) the action is carried out or threat of action is made for the purpose of advancing a political, religious, racial or ideological cause.S. 2C(1), 2008 Money Laundering and Terrorism (Prevention) Act.

A predicate offence:

(a) involves serious violence against a person;

(b) involves serious damage to property;

(c) endangers a person’s life, other than that of the person committing the action;

(d) creates a serious risk to national security or the health or safety of the public or a section of the public;

(e) is designed or intended to seriously interfere with or seriously disrupt—

     (i) any electronic system, including a computer system or system for the provision of services directly related to communications, banking or financial services;

     (ii) the provision of essential emergency services such as police, civil defence or medical service or other essential services such as utilities or transportation;

(f) involves the unlawful seizure of aircraft in flight; 

(g) involves unlawful violence against the safety of maritime navigation; 

(h) involves participating in the activities of a terrorist organisation, including the providing information, operational support or technical assistance, providing or receiving training to facilitate commission of terrorist acts or recruiting for such training; or

(i) involves travel for the purpose of planning, preparing or carrying out any action referred to in paragraphs (a) to (h).S. 2C(2), 2008 Money Laundering and Terrorism (Prevention) Act.

The use or threat of action of any of these predicate offences which involves the use of firearms or explosives is terrorism or a terrorist act whether or not any condition of paragraph (1)(b) is met.

Adherence to Global and Regional Terrorism Treaties


Belize is a State Party to most of the main United Nations treaties on terrorism.


Adherence to Global Terrorism Treaties
Treaty Adherence
1973 Convention on Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons State Party
1979 Hostage-Taking Convention State Party
1997 Terrorist Bombings Convention State Party
1999 Terrorist Financing Convention State Party
2005 Nuclear Terrorism Convention State not party


Belize is a signatory but not a State Party to the 2002 Inter-American terrorism treaty.


Adherence to Regional Terrorism Treaties
Treaty Adherence
2002 Inter-American Convention against Terrorism Signatory

Laws and Penalties for Terrorist Offences

The primary terrorism legislation in Belize is the 2008 Act. The Act determines that a natural person who commits a terrorist act is punishable on conviction with imprisonment for at least ten years and up to imprisonment for life.S. 5(a), 2008 Money Laundering and Terrorism (Prevention) Act.A legal person or other entity that commits a terrorist act may be punished with a fine which shall not be less than five hundred thousand dollars but which may extend to one million dollars.S. 5(b), 2008 Money Laundering and Terrorism (Prevention) Act. 

The offences created by the 2008 Act "shall be investigated, tried, judged and sentenced by a court in Belize regardless of whether or not an offence occurred in Belize or in another territorial jurisdiction, but without prejudice to extradition where applicable in accordance with the law".S. 10, 2008 Money Laundering and Terrorism (Prevention) Act.

Counterterrorism Capacities and Policies at Domestic Level

Belize does not have dedicated counterterrorism units in its police force


2008 Money Laundering and Terrorism (Prevention) Act