COVID-19 Civic Freedom Tracker

Keep Civic Space Healthy

This tracker monitors government responses to the pandemic that affect civic freedoms and human rights, focusing on emergency laws. For information about our methodology, click here.

For more information and analysis by region, click here.

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The COVID-19 Civic Freedom Tracker is a collaborative effort by the ICNL, ECNL, and our global network of partners, with generous research support from the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, Fionnuala D. Ní Aoláin. This is an ongoing effort, and we welcome you to email us at adeblock@icnl.org and simona@ecnl.org to share additional resources.


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Iraq

National Lockdown

The Supreme Committee for National Health and Safety announced a curfew from 7pm until 6am to last for one month, in addition to a full ban on movement on Fridays and Saturdays. Public spaces were closed, with exceptions for shops and factories during daylight hours. Updates on COVID-19 restrictions are available here

(See primary source or citation here)


Introduced 20 Apr 2020 Extended

Issue(s): Assembly, Movement

Type: order

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Iraq

Kurdistan Movement Restrictions

The Kurdistan Regional Government announced stay-at-home orders with exemptions for international organizations and diplomatic missions, but not for local civil society organizations. 

(See primary source or citation here)


Introduced 10 Apr 2020 Extended June 1

Issue(s): Assembly, Movement

Type: order

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Iraq

Travel Restrictions and Restrictions on Public Life

Beginning in March, the Kurdistan Regional Government prohibited religious activites, rituals and activities, including Friday sermons. Restrictions also limit movements within Kurdistan and at border posts.

(See primary source or citation here)


Introduced 4 Mar 2020 Extended 15 June 2020

Issue(s): Assembly, Movement

Type: order

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Iraq

Order No. 55 of 2020

The order by Iraq's Ministry of Health imposes a 14-day ban on all public gatherings, to combat the spread of coronavirus.

قرار رقم 55 لسنة 2020

 ÙŠÙØ±Ø¶ القرار الصادر عن وزارة الصحة العراقية حظراً لمدة 14 يوم على جميع التجمعات العامة لمكافحة انتشار فيروس كورونا المستجد.


Introduced 26 Feb 2020

Issue(s): Assembly

Type: order

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Iraq

Arrest of Journalists and Protesters

At least 8 journalists were arrested in Iraqi Kurdistan while covering a protest by public school teachers and government employees who were demanding their salaries. Kurdish officials said that the journalists and 11 protesters were detained for violating the ban on mass gatherings, imposed due to COVID-19.

اعتقال الصحفيين والمتظاهرين

 

تم اعتقال ما لا يقل عن 8 صحفيين في كردستان العراق أثناء تغطيتهم لاحتجاج من قبل معلمي المدارس الحكومية وموظفي الحكومة الذين كانوا يطالبون برواتبهم. قال مسؤولون أكراد أن الصحفيين و 11 متظاهراً اعتُقلوا لانتهاكهم الحظر المفروض على التجمعات العامة؛ الذي تم فرضه بسبب فيروس كورونا المستجد (كوفيد-19). 

النوع: ممارسة

تاريخ النفاذ: 21 مايو 2020

التصنيف: حرية التجمع، حرية الصحافة، حرية التعبير

(See primary source or citation here)


Introduced 21 May 2020

Issue(s): Assembly, Press Freedom, Expression

Type: practice

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Iraq

Arrest of peaceful protesters and journalists

Kurdistan Regional Government authorities arrested dozens of protesters and at least eight journalists in mid-May under the pretext of enforcing COVID-19 prevention measures. 

(See primary source or citation here)


Introduced 19 May 2020

Issue(s): Assembly, Press Freedom, Expression

Type: practice

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Iraq

Suspension of News Outlet License

Iraq has revoked Reuters news agency's reporting license for three months, after the agency reported that the number of new coronavirus cases in the country was in the thousands--much higher than official figures. In addition to temporarily revoking Reuters's licence, Iraq said it would impose a fine of about $21,000, and asked Reuters to issue an apology for a report that "put social security at risk."

إلغاء ترخيص وسيلة إخبارية

 Ø£Ù„غى العراق ترخيص وكالة أنباء رويترز لمدة ثلاثة أشهر، بعد أن أفادت الوكالة أن عدد حالات الإصابة بفيروس كورونا المستجد في البلاد كان بالآلاف – وهو أعلى بكثير من الأرقام الرسمية. بالإضافة الى إلغاء ترخيص رويترز مؤقتاً، قال العراق أنه سيفرض على وكالة رويترز غرامة قدرها حوالي 21 ألف دولار أمريكي؛ وطلب من رويترز نشر اعتذار عن تقرير "يعرض الأمن الاجتماعي للخطر".

(See primary source or citation here)


Introduced 3 Apr 2020

Issue(s): Press Freedom, Expression

Type: practice

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This is an ongoing effort, and we welcome you to email us at adeblock@icnl.org and simona@ecnl.org to share additional resources.