"The European Parliament, (…) 3. Is deeply concerned that the closing down of civil society space in developing countries is being carried out in increasingly complex and sophisticated ways, which are harder to tackle and imposed through legislation, taxation, funding limitations, increased bureaucracy, reporting and banking requirements, the criminalisation and stigmatisation of CSO representatives, defamation, all forms of harassment, online repression and internet access limitations, censorship, arbitrary detention, gender-based violence, torture and assassination, in particular in conflict-stricken states; insists on the necessity of tackling governmental and non-governmental tactics of marginalising critical voices."
DocumentEU (European Parliament) : Resolution on Addressing Shrinking Civil Society Space in Developing Countries (2016/2324(INI)), para. 3
- States should recognize accredited NGOs and facilitate their ability to conduct their activities.
- States should create, in law and practice, an enabling environment for civil society organizations to operate free from hindrance and insecurity.
- States should safeguard the ability of civil society organizations to seek, receive, and use resources, including funding.
- Defamation laws should only be used to protect individuals, never to prevent criticism of the government or institutions.
- When considering claims of defamation, political figures and public officials should be subject to greater public scrutiny and criticism than other citizens.
- States should ensure that violence, including online, does not undermine women's rights, including political participation and representation.