The response of the civil society to the government’s efforts to amend the electoral system of Moldova, its peaceful protests in May 2017 in particular, was met with repeated attacks from the authorities as well as by actions which amount to violations of the constitutional right to freedom of peaceful assembly . 

Several participants in the protests organized after May 5 have been contacted by persons who introduced themselves as representatives of law enforcement bodies and on 14 of May, the day of the planned massive protest against the change of the electoral system, there were repeated attempts by authorities to prevent those who were heading to the gathering from attending what was otherwise a peaceful and legitimate assembly. 

In the same time, the Chairman of the Parliament has labeled the civil society organizations which expressed their civic position on the reform as being “politically affiliated”.

May 19, 2017

CPR Moldova cosigns a statement condemning the attacks on the civil society organizations, as well as the measures taken by authorities to discourage participation to peaceful protests, including, among othersm canceling of bus routes to Chisinau, nation-wide suspension of domestic railway communication and fines applied to several drivers taking people to the Chisinau protest.

May 24

CPR demands accountability of those responsible for violations of the right to peaceful assembly, by submitting an appeal to the Government, in which we have requested that proper investigations are carried out, and measures are taken to prevent future violations.

“When those who are supposed to enforce the law are seen breaking it, the state fails its own citizens”.

June 9

In preparation for the protest organized by the civil society on June 11th, 2017, we published a guide on the fundamental right to freedom of assembly. 

The guide is to remind both the authorities and those who intend to participate in the protests about the most important aspects of this right and its importance in a democratic society.

September 22

Following the peaceful protest organized on September 17th, 2017, by the Council of the Great National Assembly, a criminal prosecution related to the alleged physical injury of police officers was initiated.

On September 20th, the Centru district Court admitted the prosecutor’s request and issued a 30-day arrest warrant for Alexei Alexeev, a minibus driver that participated in the protest. Under this mandate, Alexeev was placed under arrest in Penitentiary no. 13 (Chisinau). 

On September 22nd, CPR Moldova co-signs a joint statement of the civil society requesting the immediate release of Alexei Alexeev. The organizations and signatories of this statement expressed their concern about the derailment from democratic principles, the intimidation of participants of peaceful assemblies through the abusive arrest of a person who has facilitated the organization of the assembly.