Human Rights Committee 2nd Draft General Comment on the Right to Freedom of Peaceful Assembly

In November 2019, during its 127th session, the Human Rights Committee finalised its first reading of draft General Comment 37 on article 21 of the Covenant and invited all interested stakeholders to comment on the Committee’s new draft. Amnesty International submitted the organisation’s comments on 21st of February 2020, reaffirming its strong support for this initiative. These comments are guided by the general understanding of the possibility to peacefully assemble being a right and a freedom: As a rule, people are entitled to assemble whenever, wherever and however they want. The scope of the right, the states’ duty to facilitate its exercise, as well as the limitations and possibilities for states to restrict the holding of assemblies, must be defined in the light of this understanding of the right to freedom of peaceful assembly. In that sense, Amnesty International hopes that the new General Comment will further strengthen the protection of the right to freedom of peaceful assembly.