ICJ publishes Legal Guidance on Internet Restrictions and Shutdowns in Africa

Today, the ICJ published its new Legal Guidance on Internet Restrictions and Shutdowns in Africa, a useful tool for policy makers, legal professionals and civil society to address unlawful and arbitrary practices of internet shutdown for the purpose of suppressing access to information and the exercise of freedom of expression.

In recent years, there has been an increasing number of governments, including on the African continent, resorting to shutting down the internet entirely or otherwise restricting access to the internet. This Legal Guidance on Internet Restrictions and Shutdowns in Africa aims to provide guidance on the legal standards to be adhered to when imposing internet restrictions.

The Guidance is derived primarily from the legal obligations arising from the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, as re-affirmed and interpreted by the United Nations and regional tribunals and authorities. It is also based on secondary non-treaty standards relevant to freedom of expression and right of access to information.

Download the Guidance here.

Further reading 

[Declaration] The Tunis Declaration on Reinforcing the Rule of Law and Human Rights (March 2019).

[Guide] The Right to a Remedy and Reparation for Gross Human Rights Violations: Practitioner’s Guide 2 (Revised Edition, November 2018).

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