Advisory request Shrinking Civic Space

 The government has asked the Advisory Council on International Affairs to provide advice on shrinking civic space. Civic space is limited globally by an increase in autocratic tendencies and repressive national legislation. This presents both the Netherlands and the EU with difficult choices.

Segments of civil society working to defend freedom, equality, the rule of law and human rights are increasingly restricted worldwide. This is true not only of a number of states in Europe such as Russia,  but also elsewhere in the world. This forces the Netherlands, the EU and like-minded partners to make difficult choices, because supporting these groups takes a heavy toll on relations with the governments of these countries. The advisory request concerns the specific circumstances and factors are causing this shrinking of civic space and the opportunities for the Netherlands and the EU for an integrated, enhanced approach and effective partnerships.