The Right of Peaceful Assembly

Everyone has the right of peaceful assembly under customary and conventional human rights law. Restrictions on the exercise of the right must comply with the principles of legality, necessity, and proportionality.

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In Focus

Sudan

Peaceful protesters were targeted with lethal force by state agents in violation of international law in protests in 2019.

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Summary

Sudan should ensure the right of peaceful assembly is respected and protected and that police use of force is restricted as international law requires.

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In Focus

South Africa

South Africa should restrict use of firearms during assemblies in accordance with international law and protect the rights of human rights defenders to freedom of peaceful assembly.

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Summary

Latest News

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A number of States have derogated from the right of assembly owing to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Several States have derogated from their treaty obligations to respect and protect the right of assembly owing to the COVID-19 Pandemic and many are banning all public gatherings for a period of weeks or months.

23.03.20
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UN High Commissioner for Human Rights expresses deep concern about forcible repression of protest around the world

In her February 2020 address to the Human Rights Council, Michelle Bachelet expressed deep concern about forcible repression of protest around the world, in particular in Egypt, Guinea, India, Iraq, and Pakistan.

13.03.20
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UN says Colombia has suppressed peaceful protest

The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has criticised the use of the military during largely peaceful protests at the end of 2019 in Barranquilla and Bogota, as well as arbitrary raids carried out ahead of these anti-government protests and police use of force “that could border on abuse and/or torture.”

28.02.20