time,place restrictions

Protest in Fada N’Gourma against insecurity and stigmatisation

According to RFI, between 700 and 1000 people marched in Fada N’Gourma, eastern Burkina Faso, on 13th June 2020, against abuses against the population, in particular the Fulani community, and insecurity in eastern Burkina Faso. Protesters say that the civilian 'homeland defense volunteers' units, set up by the government in the fight against terrorist attacks, were targeting and stigmatising mainly members of the Fulani community. Read more

Protest in Fada N’Gourma against insecurity and stigmatisation

Countrywide protests to end police brutality in the United States met by militarised law enforcement

Massive protests erupted in cities across the United States following the death of George Floyd, a Black man, by a Minneapolis police officer on 25th May 2020. A harrowing video filmed by witnesses shows the officer pressing his knee into the handcuffed man's neck for almost nine minutes while Floyd repeatedly said, “I can’t breathe.” Outrage brimmed over, bringing hundreds of thousands to the streets to protest entrenched racism and the US’s long history of killings of Black and Brown people by law enforcement agents. Read more

Countrywide protests to end police brutality in the United States met by militarised law enforcement

Further attempts to curtail freedom of expression during COVID-19

As part of the coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency measures, the Turkish government enacted strong general restrictions on assembly that especially relate to the work of CSOs. With a total ban on public gatherings, citizens have turned to online spaces for creative means of protest. During COVID-19 pandemic there was an increase in journalists being jailed on charges of “causing people to panic and publishing reports on coronavirus outside the knowledge of authorities”. Moreover, the Turkish government discriminated against journalists when it announced the release of approximately 90,000 prisoners in order to relieve overcrowded prisons during the pandemic, but excluded journalists, human rights defenders and all political prisoners. Read more

Further attempts to curtail freedom of expression during COVID-19

Civic space concerns reinforced by COVID-19 response

Emergency measures were introduced in Kyrgyzstan in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, including a state of emergency in the capital Bishkek and several other cities and regions. These measures affected the protection of the freedoms of expression, association and assembly. For several weeks, journalists were not accredited or granted special permission to move around in the capital and other areas where the state of emergency was in place, which prevented them from effectively carrying out their work. Lawyers were also not exempted from the restrictions on movement that applied, which obstructed their efforts to provide legal assistance to clients. Rallies, pickets and all other assemblies were fully banned during the state of emergency and social media users were detained, threatened with criminal prosecution and forced to “publicly apologise” for spreading alleged false information about the pandemic.
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Civic space concerns reinforced by COVID-19 response

Spread of coronavirus and emergency safety measures put pressure on civic freedoms

Across the country, workers deemed essential during the coronavirus emergency staged walk-outs and other protests over insufficient personal protection equipment and to demand benefits such as paid sick leave or healthcare. Read more

Spread of coronavirus and emergency safety measures put pressure on civic freedoms

Canada: Natural gas pipeline project on Wet’suwet’en territory sparks national protests

Throughout February 2020, Indigenous-rights and environmental activists participated in country-wide demonstrations and set up blockades on major rail lines to challenge a natural gas pipeline project in British Colombia. Read more  |  Read in French

Canada: Natural gas pipeline project on Wet’suwet’en territory sparks national protests

Civil society disappointed by Fiji’s rejection of UN recommendations to revise repressive laws

The government has rejected recommendations from the UN Human Rights Council to review restrictive laws. Journalists were reportedly barred from the trial of a real estate development company involved in a project which led to significant environmental destruction. There is still no accountability around the case of a teenager who was allegedly physically abused by security forces for a social media post. Read more

Civil society disappointed by Fiji’s rejection of UN recommendations to revise repressive laws

Civil society platform's accreditation to observe the 22nd February presidential elections withdrawn

On the day of the elections, access to messaging services such as WhatsApp, Telegram, and Facebook Messenger appeared to be blocked on two networks on the evening of 22nd February. Prior to the elections, an independent civil society platform saw its accreditation as election observers withdrawn, while staff of the National Democratic Institute (NDI) were expelled from the country. Read more

Civil society platform's accreditation to observe the 22nd February presidential elections withdrawn

Concerns over space for opposition and dissent ahead of 2020 presidential elections

On 4th August 2019, police offices arrested human rights defender and journalism student Konan Yao Hubert at a bus station in Djékanou, according to Front Line Defenders. Police officers also reportedly physically attacked him when Yao Hubert resisted the arrest when no arrest warrant was presented. Read more  |  Read in French

Concerns over space for opposition and dissent ahead of 2020 presidential elections

Courts nullify elections, order government to allow dreadlocks in schools, in landmark cases

In a landmark ruling delivered on Monday 3rd February 2020, the Constitutional Court ordered the nullification of the May 2019 elections and ordered fresh elections, the high court in Zomba ordered the ministry of education to allow Rastafarian children with dreadlocks to enrol in public schools,
Since the May 2019 elections, Malawians engaged in sustained popular protests against the government which have been met with police reprisals, Human Rights Defenders Coalition organized a protest against the rape of women, three journalists detained for two hours at Kamuzu International Airport in Lilongwe, female journalist Patricia Kayuni was physically assaulted by protesters in Chitipa district Read more

Courts nullify elections, order government to allow dreadlocks in schools, in landmark cases