The French National Consultative Commission on Human Rights (CNCDH) adopted two opinions critical of the draft law “confirming the respect for principles of the Republic”. The Commission considered that while the law’s objective to better combat criminal radicalism is legitimate, it can never justify implementing disproportionate measures that could undermine the fundamental freedoms at the heart of republican and democratic tradition. Unfortunately, the law was adopted on 24 August 2021 without any modifications based on the Commission’s opinions.
In its opinion on Climate Emergency and Human Rights from May 2021, the French National Consultative Commission on Human Rights dedicated a paragraph to human rights defenders involved in the fight against climate change and the protection of the environment. It stressed the importance of providing a safe and enabling environment for human rights defenders to operate freely and without any restrictions. Based on the first report issued by the Observatoire des libertés associatives, the NHRI noted that human rights defenders in France – especially those working to protect the environment – find their activities are hindered. Obstacles to human rights defenders and civil society in France can take many forms. For example, they can be resource-related, judicial, administrative, police-related, or physical. In this regard, the Commission addressed the public authorities with two recommendations.
The French National Consultative Commission on Human Rights has addressed issues related to human rights defenders and civil society in many of its opinions and declarations. In its September 2021 statement on the situation facing Afghan people, the NHRI stressed that human rights defenders, as well as all Afghan people, at risk of persecution by the Taliban and who wish to seek asylum in France must be able to benefit from protection.