Paper: Civic Space in the Era of Securitised COVID-19 Responses

Paper published by European Centre for Not-for-Profit Law on 25 February 2021, accessible here.

Our paper explores how states have introduced new security-related legislations or used existing measures to further restrict civic freedoms and human rights under the cover of fighting the pandemic.

COVID-19 brought on a simultaneous threat to human and national security in a world already facing persistent risks of violent extremism and terrorist attacks. The necessity to combat this new threat quickly triggered more securitised responses from states, to the detriment of human rights.

With this paper, ECNL seeks to provide a broader overview of the restrictive measures adopted by states, in order to contribute to the analysis of the intersection between securitisation and civic freedoms. The paper:

  • provides a worldwide snapshot of restrictive security measures adopted in response to Covid-19;
  • outlines different manifestations of security measures;
  • presents challenges at the multilateral level;
  • supports strategizing the way forward for a greater protection of fundamental freedoms and civic freedoms in combating COVID-19.

Read the paper here.