A Tale of Two: The COVID-19 Pandemic and the Rule of Law in Cyprus

By Prof. Stéphanie Laulhé Shaelou, Professor of European Law and Reform and Head, School of Law, University of Central Lancashire, Cyprus campus (UCLan Cyprus) and Ms. Andrea Manoli, PhD Candidate, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), Associate Lecturer and Research Fellow, Jean Monnet Module EU-POP, School of Law, UCLan Cyprus, who participated to the online symposium of the Verfassungblog on “COVID19 and States of Emergency”.

As states of emergency were declared worldwide in response to the coronavirus pandemic, concerns arise as to the use and/or abuse of the Rule of Law in times of crisis. Drawing from the European debate on the issues of constitutionality, human rights and proportionality, the present blog-post aims at analysing a critical question. Amid the measures taken to address the COVID-19 pandemic and its consequences, to what extent is the Rule of Law safe in the Republic of Cyprus?

With reference to the long-standing Constitutional paradox within the Republic, the Union acquis,and cherished human right principles, the blog-post critically analyses the legal maxim of separation of powers in times of emergency. It then gives an overview of the impact of the emergency measures on vulnerable groups and the profound impact on the administration of justice. The blog-post makes some initial observations as to the safeguarding or not of the Rule of Law within the Republic, with reference to constitutional provisions protecting human rights and civil liberties. It concludes with acknowledging that the upholding of the Rule of Law in times of crisis, including during a global pandemic, constitutes a global challenge to be addressed through coordinated, multi-level and inclusive democratic responses underpinned by scientific evidence and based on shared fundamental values and principles.

Read the article at UCLan Cyprus Law School Blog

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