Civil society continues to push for the approval of the NGO law without amendments

Association

On 16th May 2018, 35 civil society organisations urged the Parliament to adopt the draft Law on Non-Commercial Organizations, without introducing any amendments that could limit the right to freedom of expression and access to foreign funding of CSOs. The organisations also called on the government to engage in a transparent and open debate if changes to the existing draft law were to be made, as the legislation was developed in consultation with CSOs from its initial stage. 

At the end of March 2018, the Center for Legal Resources of Moldova (CRJM) published a practical guide for civil society organisations to improve the communication of their mission with the public and to suggest a number of tools CSOs can used to promote their work at a minimum cost.  This guide comes in the context of a new law, the so-called 2% Law, which grants individuals the right to direct 2% of their income tax annually to non-governmental organisations acting in the public interest and/or to religious organisations. The law was approved by the Parliament in 2014, followed by government-issued regulations in 2016. One of the benefits of such a mechanism, as shown in other countries where similar mechanisms exist, is the more effective communication of organisations with the public on their work and mission.

Peaceful Assembly

Several people protested in front of the Parliament in late May 2018 requesting the government to forbid the promotion of same sex relationships and sex education at schools. In response, the LGBTI community described the action as illegal. 

The protest action was organised by a Moldovan religious association (Fericită Maică Matronă) and took place after the LGBTI community organised the "No Fear of Love" demonstration on 19th May 2018. This demonstration resulted in altercations between the police and some of the religious protesters opposing the march.

Expression

On 14th June 2018 the Parliament approved the National Concept of Media Development, confirming the country's compliance with European requirements regarding media freedom and the creation of an enabling environment for journalists.  

Meanwhile, a first debate was organised in Parliament to discuss a new draft law on advertising. The draft law's objective is to "improve the legal framework for advertising, aligning it to the European law." Proponents of the law, stated that the main purpose is to ensure transparency in the advertising market and self-regulation regarding political advertising during the pre-electoral period.