Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Thailand - excessive force

Human rights defenders, critics targeted in Indonesia while protests on Papua repressed

In recent months, activists have been targeted for comments they made during an online talk or for reporting on corruption. An academic has been jailed for defamation while street artists are being silenced for a mural and graffiti critical of the state. A West Papuan activist facing trial has been hospitalised while there has been a lack of accountability for excessive force and other violations by the security forces during several protests related to Papua. Read more

Human rights defenders, critics targeted in Indonesia while protests on Papua repressed

Indian government snooping row sparks outrage as restrictions on civic freedoms persist

Calls for the authorities to release human rights defenders and activists detained under the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) have escalated following an exposé by online news portal The Wire and 16 other media organisations which revealed the names of people who were either persons of interest or forensically identified as having been targeted by clients of the Israel-based NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware. Farmers have continued protests against the new farm laws despite restriction, arbitrary arrests and excessive force by the authorities. There have also been new reports on restrictions on civic freedoms in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir
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Indian government snooping row sparks outrage as restrictions on civic freedoms persist

Activists, journalists continue to face reprisals as COVID-19 law exacerbates violations in Cambodia

In recent months, environmental defenders have been charged and convicted for advocacy against environmental destruction. Opposition members, journalists and perceived dissidents continue to face reprisals from the government and from non-state actors. Read more

Activists, journalists continue to face reprisals as COVID-19 law exacerbates violations in Cambodia

Activists at risk as repression in Papua escalates while Indonesia imposes further net restrictions

Over the last few months, activists from Papua have been arrested and charged for their activism. Those protesting against government policies, including students, have faced harassment, detention and even attacks from non-state actors with impunity. The internet has been disrupted in Papua and journalists have been targeted. Internet laws have been used to silence criticism of authorities in Papua. The authorities are bringing in new internet regulations which poses serious risks to privacy, freedom of speech and access to information. Read more

Activists at risk as repression in Papua escalates while Indonesia imposes further net restrictions

Press freedom under assault in Bangladesh while critics, protesters also silenced

In recent months, journalists have been targeted for their reporting on the pandemic or being critical of the authorities. Some have been criminalised and attacked, including Rozina Islam, Abu Tayeb Munshi and Ruhul Amin Gazi and there is still no accountability for the death of writer and commentator Mushtaq Ahmed. Reports of police brutality and attacks by pro-government groups against anti-Modi protesters in March 2021 have yet to be investigated. Read more

Press freedom under assault in Bangladesh while critics, protesters also silenced

Crackdown on Thai activists continues as new restrictive NGO law proposed

Since the beginning of 2021, scores of activists have been charged for lese majeste, sedition and other violations, including seven leading pro-democracy protesters who have been denied bail. A restrictive new NGO law has been proposed that could be used to muzzle civil society groups and non-governmental organisations. The security forces have used rubber bullets, tears gas and water cannon to disperse protests while the authorities are increasingly invoking the lese majeste laws to restrict public discourse on the monarchy. Read more

Crackdown on Thai activists continues as new restrictive NGO law proposed

Indian authorities target activists, journalists as they suppress support for the farmers’ protests

Since early January 2021, the authorities have continued to suppress and demonise the farmers protest movement using excessive force with over a hundred detained and charged as well as blocking roads and protests spaces. Activists supporting them have been criminalised using draconian laws as well as journalists reporting and commenting on the protests. The government has also attempted to silence criticism online. Read more

Indian authorities target activists, journalists as they suppress support for the  farmers’ protests

Critical voices silenced, impunity for excessive force and unlawful killings in Indonesia

In recent months, police have arrested, charged and convicted individuals for their social media posts, while a journalist was assaulted by the military. Political activists in Maluku and Papua have also been jailed for their peaceful activism. There has continued to be a lack of accountability for police violence during the mass protests against the job creation bill while reports of torture and unlawful killings continued to be reported. Read more

Critical voices silenced, impunity for excessive force and unlawful killings in Indonesia

Artists, journalists and activists targeted in Bangladesh while protesters threatened and attacked

In recent months, the government has used the repressive Digital Security Act (DSA) against artists, including film director Anonno Mamun and folk singer Rita Dewan, while writer Mushtaq Ahmed and cartoonist Ahmed Kabir Kishore remain in detention. A Daily Sangram reporter was also arrested under this law while photojournalist Shafiqul Islam Kajol was finally released on bail following his disappearance in March and detention in May 2020 under the DSA. There have been acts of harassment against relatives of a human rights defender in exile while anti-rape protesters have been threatened, smeared and attacked. Police also attempt to disrupt medical student protests and prevent opposition gatherings. Read more

Artists, journalists and activists targeted in Bangladesh while protesters threatened and attacked

Thai authorities use excessive force, lese-majeste laws to clamp down on pro-democracy protests

There have been ongoing pro-democracy protests in Thailand demanding the dissolution of Thailand’s military-backed government led by Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, the drafting of a new constitution and an end to the harassment of activists and government critics. Over the last month, the authorities have continued to attempt to suppress the protests by using excessive force and blocking public spaces, charging protest leaders for lese-majeste, targeting student protesters and using disinformation tactics
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Thai authorities use excessive force, lese-majeste laws to clamp down on pro-democracy protests