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Article

Global assault on NGOs reaches crisis point as new laws curb vital human rights work

Governments across the world are increasingly attacking non-governmental organizations (NGOs) by creating laws that subject them and their staff to surveillance, nightmarish bureaucratic hurdles and the ever-present threat of imprisonment…

Amnesty International’ report reveals the startling number of countries that are using bullying techniques and repressive regulations to prevent NGOs from doing their vital work. The report lists 50 countries worldwide where anti-NGO laws have been implemented or are in the pipeline… In the past two years alone, almost 40 pieces of legislation that interfere with the right to association and are designed to hamper the work of civil society organizations have been put in place or are in the works around the world.

These laws commonly include implementing ludicrous registration processes for organizations, monitoring their work, restricting their sources of resources and, in many cases, shutting them down if they don’t adhere to the unreasonable requirements imposed on them… In some countries, the attack on NGOs is particularly targeted against organizations that defend the rights of marginalized groups. Those promoting women’s rights, including sexual and reproductive health and rights, LGBTI rights, the rights of migrants and refugees and environmental groups are among the worst affected.