Kyrgyzstan: Briefing paper documents Covid-19 restrictions on free speech, civil society and access to justice

This paper has been prepared within the framework of an initiative of International Partnership for Human Rights (IPHR) and its partners from Central Asia to monitor and document the human rights impact of governments’ responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in this region. The primary focus of this initiative is the protection of the fundamental freedoms of expression, association and assembly; the rights to liberty and security and access to justice; as well as the rights of vulnerable groups. The Central Asian papers, planned to be compiled into a common, regional report when they have all been finalised, are also part of a broader IPHR initiative to assess governments’ responses to the COVID-19 pandemic
across the Former Soviet Union (FSU). All country reports prepared in this context are based on information and data provided by national focal points – local researchers working with IPHR – and local civil society organisations with which IPHR has been collaborating for many years, as well as on information obtained through additional research conducted by IPHR. While collecting the data we paid particular attention to rights violations that occurred exclusively in the context of restrictive measures and policies that were introduced by the local authorities in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we also documented developments related to pre-existing trends of concern that were reinforced during the
pandemic.