UN Urges Countries to Protect Human Rights During Coronavirus Crisis

March 16, 2020

United Nations human rights experts are urging government leaders not to abuse emergency powers in response to the coronavirus outbreak. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet stated: "Being open and transparent is key to empowering and encouraging people to participate in measures designed to protect their own health and that of the wider population, especially when trust in the authorities has been eroded." Andrea Jelinek, Chair of the European Data Protection Board, also released a statement, saying: "even in these exceptional times, the data controller must ensure the protection of the personal data of the data subjects." Some countries, such as Israel, intend to use cellphone data to track coronavirus, threatening civil liberties. A recent book by EPIC Advisory Board Member Professor Francisca Bignami on EU Law in Populist Times at the EPIC Bookstore explores derogations for national security.

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