Stories from April, 2020
"During the global pandemic, we need to stop the war and internet shutdown to fight COVID-19 in Rakhine."
Combatting COVID-19 through all available legal means is urgent. However, such means need not be at the expense of protecting human rights — including the right to privacy.
Papua New Guinea’s police minister says two journalists who reported on COVID-19 funding ‘can’t be trusted’
"It is not up to a government minister to decide whether journalists should be fired, and especially when it is because of a report he didn’t like."
EngageMedia lists some of the media initiatives addressing the COVID-19 "Infodemic' across the Asia-Pacific region
"Resorting to censorship, especially in its extreme form, in a time of crisis reflects the insecurity of the government of the day."
As part of their measures to counter COVID-19, Jordan, Oman, Morocco, the UAE and Yemen, have all banned print newspapers until further notice.
"The Covid-19 crisis must not be used as pretext for getting rid of journalists who do not blindly toe the government line."
Following outcry from human rights groups and citizens, a controversial bill that sought to criminalize the spread of ‘’fake news’’ online was quickly withdrawn.
COVID-19 measures in the MENA region have especially targeted some of the most vulnerable groups such as detained human rights defenders, migrant workers and independent media.
Serbian government revokes controversial COVID-19-related decree used as pretext to arrests journalists
Public outcry after arrest of journalist embarrassed the Serbian government, which revoked its decree aimed at centralizing flow of information about COVID-19 epidemic.
Activist and human rights groups are worried that free speech is being undermined in the name of fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
"There isn’t enough information available on what data will be collected, how long will it be stored and what uses it will be put to."