Over 100 rights groups call on the Council of Europe to act on the growing threat of SLAPPs

Recent articles in Europe & Central Asia

Lawyer Ivan Pavlov (C back), who is facing a criminal charge for disclosing pre-trial investigation findings, talks to journalists outside Moscow's Basmanny District Court after a remand hearing, 30 April 2021, Vyacheslav ProkofyevTASS via Getty Images

Rights groups express solidarity with Russian human rights lawyer Ivan Pavlov

Pavlov, who is charged with disclosing details of a preliminary investigation which has been declared secret, most recently defended Alexei Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation against criminal accusations of extremism.

Women wearing black clothing and tape over their mouths demonstrate against the conviction of a journalist and a doctor over the disclosure of a protester's medical records, Minsk, Belarus, 2 March 2021, -/AFP via Getty Images

Belarusian parliament passes amendments stifling press freedom

The legislation includes a ban on coverage of unsanctioned protests, restrictions on the establishment of media outlets, and other policies to restrict press freedom. To enter into force, it needs to be approved by the Constitutional Court and signed by President Lukashenko.

Uzbekistan's President Shavkat Mirziyoyev (on screen) takes part in a video conference meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), 18 December 2020, Mikhail Klimentyev/Russian Presidential Press and Information Office/TASS via Getty Images

Uzbekistan: New laws introduce prison sentences for insulting the president

New amendments introduce prison sentences for insulting or defaming the president, and making online calls for “mass disturbances”. Using the internet to “disrespect” the state will now be an offence.