Talking ASEAN Webinar on "Protecting Fundamental Human Rights in ASEAN amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic"


- Yuyun Wahyuningrum
(Representative of Indonesia to the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR))

- Rachel Arinii Judhistari?
(East Asia and ASEAN Manager for the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA))


- A. Ibrahim Almuttaqi
(Head of ASEAN Studies Program, The Habibie Center)

Wednesday, 22 April 2020 at 14.00 - 16.00

Youtube: The Habibie Center

The speakers' presentation can be downloaded at:

It has been more than a month since the World Health Organisation (WHO) upgraded the status of the COVID-19 outbreak from an epidemic to a pandemic on 11 March. Many governments haven taken extreme measures in containing local transmission, including by applying lockdown orders. However, some countries are not well-prepared for these lockdowns: people fall victim to financial and psychological distress that governments are not yet able to tackle simultaneously, while it is the government's responsibility to protect the right to social protection covering situations beyond one's control, including in pandemics. These are only part of all the concerns of human rights in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some Southeast Asian countries' responses to the COVID-19 pandemic are exemplary, but others do not look very promising. Meanwhile, ASEAN held a Special ASEAN Summit on COVID-19 on 14 April 2020.

What are the existing public policies to protect people's human rights in extraordinary situations such as pandemics? Are the prevention and mitigation measures taken by Southeast Asian countries and ASEAN as a community amidst the COVID-19 pandemic adequate and respective of fundamental human rights? What are the possible opportunities and challenges in overcoming said issues?