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In Geneva, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, said
that emergency powers “should not be a weapon Governments can wield to quash dissent, control the population, and even perpetuate their time in power”.
Hunting for food
In a statement, she added: “Shooting, detaining, or abusing someone for breaking a curfew because they are desperately searching for food is clearly an unacceptable and unlawful response. So is making it difficult or dangerous for a woman to get to hospital to give birth. In some cases, people are dying because of the inappropriate application of measures that have been supposedly put in place to save them.”
Respect for people’s rights covered their inherent freedoms “across the spectrum, including economic, social, and cultural rights, and civil and political rights”, the
High Commissioner explained, adding that protecting these was “fundamental to the success of the public health response and recovery from the pandemic”.