Latest Developments

Protests against alleged corruption in management of oil and gas reserves

On 14th June 2019, anti-riot police prevented a protest from taking place in Dakar. The protest, organised by the platform Aar Li Nu Bokk (preserving our common good), aimed at demanding transparency in granting contracts for the exploitation of oil and gas reserves. The protest was banned hours before the protest by the prefect of Dakar citing the grounds of 'real threats to disturb public order', 'incitement to violence through irreverent remarks' and 'risks of infiltration of ill-disposed individuals'. Some protesters were arrested as they attempted to access the place of the planned protest, defying the ban. Read more

Protests against alleged corruption in management of oil and gas reserves
French

Anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism funding measures may overburden CSOs

New measures to combat terrorism funding and money laundering have caused confusion among civil society, who also have raised concerns that these measures may increase the administrative burden on CSOs and may impact on their ability to fundraise. In addition, a school lecture on gender equality and identity delivered by a LGBTI CSO, sparked debate in the parliament in April 2019. Read more

Anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism funding measures may overburden CSOs

Protesters Demand Better Working Conditions

Protesters demand better working conditions for workers in the country, more protests as construction workers die while on duty, Community members in Pansiki protest against construction of Hydro Power Plant in their region, Georgia drops one slot in RSF annual index, Read more

Protesters Demand Better Working Conditions

Right-wing coalition members threaten media independence and freedom of expression

Following the parliamentary elections on 3rd March 2019 and the formation of the coalition government including conservative and right-wing party members, the civic space has reportedly worsened. There have been attempts of political interference in media and verbal attacks against critical journalists. Several journalists quit their jobs citing censorship attempts; there have been also concerns that politically motivated smears against media will result in self-censorship. Protests and social media campaigns were launched to denounce the newly formed government coalition and the threat to basic freedoms. Read more

Right-wing coalition members threaten media independence and freedom of expression

Growing protection concerns as journalists in Greece targeted by violent actors

Journalists and media professional have been targeted by protesters and violent non-state actors for their critical reporting. On 14th May 2019, the car of a well-known police reporter for the CNN’s Greek edition, was destroyed in an arson attack. In addition, the head of the Greek National Commission for Human Rights (GNCHR) resigned accusing the government of “authoritarianism in taking and enforcing its decisions” and for demonstrating “indifferent and often degrading positions” towards the Commission. On the positive side, efforts have been made towards decriminalisation of defamation. Read more

Growing protection concerns  as journalists in Greece targeted by violent actors

Fiji authorities suppress workers and attempt to silence activist

In recent months, the Fiji authorities have arrested unionists and workers for planning to hold protests and threatened teachers and government employees not to participate in protests,. They have also attempted to silence a women’s rights defender ahead of the UN Secretary Generals’ visit to Fiji and detained foreign journalists. Read more

Fiji authorities suppress workers and attempt to silence activist

Despite progress on HRD bill, attacks against activists and media persist in the Philippines

A Human Rights Defenders bill moved closer to become law in June 2019 after it was approved by the House of Representatives. Despite this, the UN says the situation of human rights continues to deteriorate. In March 2019, more charges were filed against critical news outlet Rappler while in April 2019, activist Bernardino Patigas was killed by an unknown gunman. Further, NGOs are facing scrutiny under the guise of fighting terrorism and money laundering and are taking the threats against them to the Supreme Court. Read more

Despite progress on HRD bill, attacks against activists and media persist in the Philippines

Demonstrators protest neo-nazi march

Bulgarian government funds projects to support civil society in some Balkan countries, official opposition protests government's decision to write off debt by the grand Mufti, protesters oppose neo-nazi march, while new RSF index reveals Bulgaria's new ranking on media freedom Read more

Demonstrators protest neo-nazi march

Access to social media blocked on day of anti-government protest

Internet providers blocked the access to social media platforms such as Whatsapp, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram as a planned anti-government protest on 7th June 2019 was about to take place in Liberia's capital, Monrovia. According to digital rights CSO NetBlocks, based on network measurement data, the leading provider Lonestar also restricted Gmail and access to AP News, a news agency that reportedly published a critical article on events in the morning of 7th June, besides restrictions on the access to social media. Read more

Access to social media blocked on day of anti-government protest

Political interference and intimidation of the press in Timor-Leste

A regional CSO reported in May 2019 that there have been reports of of press intimidation and interference in Timor-Leste. In the same month, workers held a mass May Day rally in the capital Dili, demanding their rights Read more

Political interference and intimidation of the press in Timor-Leste