Civic Space Developments

Human rights lawyer imprisoned for tweet, Nabeel Rajab conditionally released from prison

Human rights defender and lawyer Abdullah Al-Shamlawi prosecuted and sentenced; prominent human rights defender Nabeel Rajab, Founding Director of the Gulf Centre for Human Rights and Co-Founder and former President of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, was conditionally released from prison to carry out the remaining three years of his sentence non-custodially; Read more

Human rights lawyer imprisoned for tweet, Nabeel Rajab conditionally released from prison

Activists & women human rights defenders continue to face reprisals

15th May 2020 marked the two-year anniversary of the arrest of WHRD Loujain Al-Hathloul; , Activist Dr Abdullah Al-Hamid dies in Al-Ha'ir prison in Riyadh; Yemeni blogger and human rights defender, Mohamad Al-Bokari arrested for LGBTIQ+ related post; Read more

Activists & women human rights defenders continue to face reprisals

Myanmar activists protesting internet ban criminalised while attacks against Rohingya continue

In recent months, activists and students have been charged or convicted for protesting against the year-long internet ban in the Rakhine and Chin states. A news editor has been jailed for two years for an error in reporting on the coronavirus (COVID-19). The pandemic is also being used as a pretext to harass Rohingyas as attacks against them persist. Read more

Myanmar activists protesting internet ban criminalised while attacks against Rohingya continue

Public vilification of Indigenous peoples and criminalisation of environmental defenders

On 16th July 2020, Maya Q’eqchi Indigenous leader Bernardo Caal Xol was declared a prisoner of conscience by human rights organisation Amnesty International. Bernardo Caal Xol has defended the rights of communities in Santa María de Cahabón, department of Alta Verapáz, which have resisted the construction of a hydroelectric dam in the region. Read more

Public vilification of Indigenous peoples and criminalisation of environmental defenders

Venezuela stifles dissent with political interference in opposition parties and detentions

At the 44th session of the Human Rights Council, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, presented a new report on the situation in Venezuela between June 2019 and May 2020. Read more

Venezuela stifles dissent with political interference in opposition parties and detentions

Judicial harassment of FNDC activists; 6 people killed in protest against COVID-19 police roadblocks

On 17th July 2020 - three days before a planned FNDC protest (see under Peaceful Assembly) - armed and hooded police officers arrived at the residence of Ibrahima Diallo, coordinator of Tournons la Page Guinea and in charge of operations for FNDC. As Diallo was not at home, officers left a summons with his wife, calling for Diallo to present himself to the Central Direction of the Judicial Police for 'disturbance to the State'. Read more

Judicial harassment of FNDC activists; 6 people killed in protest against COVID-19 police roadblocks

Civil dialogue continues, but no concrete support from government

There has been an active civil society dialogue with the government during the state of emergency, in particular due to the efforts of the NGO sector, and when discussing the demands and measures to be put in place to tackle the current situation. While Civic Alliance Latvia (CAL) has been working on pushing government’s actions to diminish the impact of COVID-19, it has not been successful in achieving concrete support measures for NGOs. In a concerning development, CSOs have noticed that during the emergency period authorities have become accustomed to addressing issues of public interest hastily, without undertaking public consultation as the best practice and regulation process entails.
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Civil dialogue continues, but no concrete support from government

New hope for Malawi after sustained protests

Following the court’s nullification of the May 2019 election results on 3rd March 2020, authorities under president Peter Mutharika’s regime embarked on a crackdown of dissenters, critics and the judiciary as the rerun, slated for 23rd June 2020 approached. , the NGO Board in collaboration with the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs began developing reporting regulations for NGOs. Read more

New hope for Malawi after sustained protests

Activists denounce police excesses in enforcing COVID-19 restrictions

human rights activists protest killings by Kenyan police officers while enforcing virus-related restrictions and also accused officers of using the situation to extort bribes; at least a dozen officers had been interdicted after public uproar over police brutality in curfew enforcement; Hundreds protest over demolitions in Nairobi's Kariobangi poor informal settlement; Blogger Robert Alai arrested over COVID-19 post Read more

Activists denounce police excesses in enforcing COVID-19 restrictions

Opposition candidates and supporters persecuted, detained ahead of elections

Presidential candidates and opposition protesters arrested and detained, Journalists attacked an arrested while covering protests Read more

Opposition candidates and supporters persecuted, detained ahead of elections