Has the pandemic done lasting damage to democratic freedoms in Europe?

By Aarti Narsee, Civic Space Research for CIVICUS Monitor

As the coronavirus pandemic moves into its third year, there is no doubt that it will have lasting effects on civic and democratic freedoms. Governments around the world, including in Europe, have used the public health emergency to undermine fundamental rights. Even as these governments ease pandemic countermeasures, their attempts to restrict civic freedoms continue. The pandemic has fused with a range of other factors to chip away at democratic rights.

According to the CIVICUS Monitor—an online tool created by the civil society organization CIVICUS that tracks the space available for civil society—civic freedoms continue to decline worldwide.

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