In April and May 2020, at least 20 journalists have been charged or arrested under the controversial Digital Security Act (DSA). They have been arrested for social media posts critical of the government, including reporting on the government’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic. For more details, see the News Item section below in this report.
In addition, under the pretense of preventing the spread of COVID-19 in Cox’s Bazar, the government of Bangladesh has intercepted and detained boats carrying Rohingya refugees fleeing an ethnically targeted military crackdown in Myanmar. The refugees have been relocated to an uninhabited island off of Bangladesh’s southern coast. Learn more about how Bangladesh’s COVID-19 response impacts civic freedoms with ECNL-ICNL’s COVID-19 Civic Freedom Tracker.