Civic Space Developments

Damning Commision of Enquiry report finds indications of crimes against humanity

A UN Commission of Enquiry found that “there are reasonable grounds to believe that crimes against humanity have been committed in Eritrea since 1991,” and that Eritrean government officials are responsible for crimes of enslavement, imprisonment, enforced disappearance, torture, other inhumane acts, persecution, rape and murder. Read more

Large protests met with violence in Baghdad

Peaceful protests that broke out in Baghdad’s green zone on May 20 2016 were met with lethal force by Iraqi security forces, including the use of rubber bullets, live ammunition and teargas canisters. Read more

Black Lives Matter Activist convicted of 'felony lynching'

The criminalisation of protesters in the USA was highlighted by the conviction of Black Lives Matter activist, Jasmine Richards for “felony lynching”. Read more

New law undermines civil and political rights

The Sovereign Security Act seriously undermines freedom of association in Nicaragua. The legislation also restricts the right to peaceful assembly as it gives discretionary powers to the police to prevent or stop any demonstration. Read more

More flexible tax rules help smaller CSOs

Smaller civil society organisations benfitted from a relaxation of tax reporting laws while protests took place without hindrance on a number of issues. Some journalists however experienced harrassment from members of the public who disagreed with their views. Read more

Protest rights violated in Lesotho

Authorities restricted the right to protest on at least two occassions in May and June while the administrators of a Facebook group which had leaked government information were detained. Read more

Civil society organisations targetted through break-ins

Civic Space has worsened of late in Uganda as an LGBTI organisation was refused registration, the offices of three CSOs were broken into in the space of two months and to register an LGBTI the freedoms of peaceful assembly and expression were heavily restricted during the February 2016 election period. Read more

Defenders Speaking Out: “The regime in Eritrea is a crime in itself.”

Today, the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea (COI) released its second report, finding that the government of Eritrea has committed crimes against humanity. This video from DefendDefenders (East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project) shows interviews with Eritrean human rights defenders in exile who have, and continue to, speak out against the ruthless Eritrean regime. Read more

Expression in Cape Verde

While the media sector is relatively small, it is dynamic and marked by real pluralism. Community and private radio and television stations operate alongside state-owned media. Read more

Peaceful Assembly in Cape Verde

Freedom of peaceful assembly is guaranteed by Article 52 of the constitution, which provides that the organisers must simply notify the authorities that they intend to gather. Read more