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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com to share additional resources.
Amendments to the Law on Information
The amendments prohibit the publication online of "false information threatening to cause damage to human life and health… or other socially dangerous consequences."(See primary source or citation here)
Introduced 17 Mar 2020
Issue(s): Disinformation, Expression
Amendments to the Criminal Code
The amendments increase the penalties for violations of sanitary, hygiene, and quarantine regimes. Under the amended criminal code, violations of the epidemic-related rules that threaten to spread disease may be punished by 3 years’ imprisonment or a fine of 2,500-5,000 Manat (US$1,500-3,000).(See primary source or citation here)
Introduced 17 Mar 2020
Decision of the Cabinet of Ministers No. 124 of 2020
The decision introduces an SMS notification system to control individuals' movement. In order to leave their place of residence, persons must send an SMS with their identity information and reason for leaving. A person may leave only after receiving a positive response from the e-Government information system. The response will also indicate the amount of time a person is permitted to be outside of their residence.
Introduced 2 Apr 2020
Issue(s): Surveillance, Privacy, Movement
Operational Headquarters under the Cabinet of Ministers on Additional Measures Related to Coronavirus
The order restricts inter-district and inter-city traffic except for the movement of special purpose vehicles. The order also restricts access to all boulevards, parks and recreation areas, and suspends the in-person services of all commercial establishments, except supermarkets, grocery stores and pharmacies.(See primary source or citation here)
Introduced 29 Mar 2020
Declaration of Special Quarantine Regime
The order prohibits the assembly of more than 10 persons in public places. Persons over the age of 65 are also prohibited from leaving their homes.(
Introduced 24 Mar 2020 Extended through 28 December 2020
Issue(s): Assembly, Movement
Crackdown on Critics and Use of Excessive Force by the Police
Azerbaijani authorities are reportedly misusing coronavirus restrictions to arrest opposition activists and government critics, including at least one journalist. Those arrested have been charged with violating the lockdown or disobeying police orders. Some of the persons detained claimed they were beaten by police officers while in custody.(See primary source or citation here)
Introduced 16 Apr 2020