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Espionage Act charges against Assange jeopardise press freedom

In the period covered by this update, from 20th May to the 8th July 2019, there have been coordinated rallies and demonstrations across the US on issues ranging from migration, women's rights, public housing and climate change. In many cases, demonstrations resulted in the arrest of some participants. There have also been a number of developments related to freedom of association and expression - in particular, indictments in the Assange WikiLeaks case which have drawn concerns over the state of press freedom in the country. Read more

Espionage Act charges against Assange jeopardise press freedom

18 attacks against freedom of expression documented in a year

A report published by CAInfo stated that from 1st April 2018 until 31st March 2019, 18 cases of threats against freedom of expression were documented. Read more

18 attacks against freedom of expression documented in a year

Government intensifies crackdown following January 2019 protests

The government has intensified arrests of activists and opposition leaders accused of having being part of the January 2019 protests. Doctors and lawyers who assisted protesters threatened. Journalists harassed and threatened while covering a story at Harae hospital, activists arrested and detained while returning to the country at the airport
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Government intensifies crackdown following January 2019 protests

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

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

Tunisia civic space under threat by emergency bill and attempts to undermine transitional justice

A repressive state of emergency draft bill is under discussion in parliament, while the state of emergency has been continuously extended for almost four years during which emergency powers have been abused resulting in human rights violations. The new bill could grant Tunisian authorities sweeping powers to repress civic rights. Additionally, in April, the Ministry of Human Rights and Relations with Civil Society distributed confidentially a proposal to parliament that would effectively ensure impunity for past gross human rights violations, many against peaceful protesters, and grant perpetrators amnesty, an attempt that will undermine victim's rights and civil society mobilisation for justice. Read more

Tunisia civic space under threat by emergency bill and attempts to undermine transitional justice



Dispersal of protests continues to be a major challenge to peaceful assembly

Authorities continue to disperse and restrict protests, while the courts issue positive orders holding security officers to account for excessive force. Read more

Dispersal of protests continues to be a major challenge to peaceful assembly