Library of Congress

Law Library of Congress

The Library of Congress > Law Library > News & Events > Global Legal Monitor

The Global Legal Monitor is an online publication from the Law Library of Congress covering legal news and developments worldwide. It is updated frequently and draws on information from official national legal publications and reliable press sources. You can find previous news by searching the Global Legal Monitor.

Uzbekistan: New Requirements for Uzbek Citizens’ Personal Data Localization Enter into Force

(May 7, 2021) On April 16, 2021, Uzbekistan’s Law on Amendments and Additions to Certain Legislative Acts of the Republic of Uzbekistan entered into force. This law, which Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev signed into law on January 14, 2021, amends the country’s Law on Personal Data and introduces new requirements on personal data localization.

Provisions of the Amendments

The newly added article 27(1) to the Law on Personal Data defines the conditions and requirements for processing personal data for citizens of Uzbekistan. (Law on Amendments and Additions to Certain Legislative Acts art. 13; Law on Personal Data art. 27(1).)

According to the new law, the personal data of Uzbek citizens must be processed “[b]y technical means physically located in the territory of Uzbekistan, and in databases duly registered with the data protection authority in Uzbekistan”—namely, the State Inspectorate for Control in the Field of Informatization and Telecommunications of the Republic of Uzbekistan (UzComNazorat). Furthermore, the data localization requirement applies to the collection, systematization, and storage of data, and to all types of data processing, including operations carried out using information technology and via the internet. (Art. 27(1).)

The compliance obligation rests with the owner and/or operator of the database. The owner is any person who owns the database that includes the personal data. The operator is any person who processes the personal data.

Under this law, infringements of the requirements are punished under provisions of the Administrative Responsibility Code and the Criminal Code of the Republic of Uzbekistan. (Art. 33.)

Fines for the unlawful collection, systematization, storage, modification, addition, use, provision, dissemination, transfer, depersonalization, and destruction of personal data can be as much as three to five base calculated values (equivalent to approximately US$64.60 to $106.00) for individuals, and from five to 10 base calculated values (approximately US$106.00 to $211.00) for officials. (Art. 33 of the Law on Personal Data; art. 46 of the Code of Administrative Responsibility.)

If the unlawful processing is repeated after the imposition of the administrative fine, then the fine must be increased to as much as 50 base calculation values (approximately US$1,057), or an individual must be “deprived of a certain right” (the law does not specify what kind of “right”) for up to three years or sentenced to correctional labor for up to two years. (Art. 33 of the Law on Personal Data; art. 141(2) of the Criminal Code.)

When the same actions are committed by a prior conspiracy of a group of persons; repeatedly or by a dangerous recidivist; out of mercenary or other base motives; and/or using official position; and/or if the actions entail grave consequences, the law provides for higher fines (the equivalent of approximately US$1,057–$2,115) or stricter criminal punishments in the form of correctional labor for up to three years, or restriction of freedom for up to three years, or imprisonment for up to three years. (Art. 33 of the Law on Personal Data; art. 141(2) of the Criminal Code.)

Implications

On February 12, 2020, the Cabinet of Ministers of Uzbekistan published a draft regulation—“How Databases on Personal Data Should Be Registered”—that aimed to further regulate the data localization requirements. This draft regulation sets out the mechanics of monitoring compliance with data protection requirements on the internet, and in particular, compliance with the data localization requirement.

The draft regulation proposes using restrictions on access to online resources as a remedy for noncompliance and establishing a special registry to list violators of personal data storage and processing rules.

According to the draft regulation, it should be possible for the government to completely block access to the online resources of the violators or limit such access by reducing the internet speed for accessing these resources. The draft regulation would require UzComNazorat to include the violator’s online resources in the personal data database registry and restrict access to these resources within 12 hours of a violation being reported.

Uzbek officials have stated that the placement of servers in the territory of Uzbekistan would help “to increase the Internet speed 10 times.” However, critics of the amendments claim that such measures are aimed at increasing control over internet users and the content posted on social networks.

Back to Top

International: Ten Protected Sites Added to International Union for Conservation of Nature “Green List”

(May 7, 2021) The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has added 10 additional protected areas to its “Green List”—a growing list of nearly 60 sites that meet IUCN’s 17 globally applicable standards for protected areas, which focus on good governance, planning, management, and preservation of nature. The standards are developed and monitored by the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA), one of six specialized IUCN commissions. In addition to the Green List protected sites accredited across the globe, 80 additional sites are currently candidates to be granted Green List status. The Green List, which was established by the IUCN in 2012, follows IUCN’s better-known Red List of Threatened Species, which was established in 1964 and is the world’s most comprehensive source on the conservation status of animal, fungi, and plant species.

The IUCN

The IUCN is an international organization that was established in 1948 and currently has over 1,400 members, including states, government agencies, national and international nongovernmental organizations, indigenous peoples, and affiliate organizations. The IUCN has played a key role at the global, regional, and national levels in drafting and implementing the 1992 Convention on Biological Diversity, the Aichi Biodiversity Targets (2011–2020), and the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from Their Utilization. The IUCN has also participated in the process of developing the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, which will be confirmed in October 2021 at the 15th Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Convention on Biological Diversity and a “Triple Planetary Emergency”

 The Convention on Biological Diversity and the global standards developed and implemented by the IUCN can be seen in the context of what the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has described in a recent report, Making Peace with Nature, as a triple planetary emergency, encompassing the climate, biodiversity, and pollution crises. Following the COP15 of the Convention on Biological Diversity later this year, the signatory states to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will convene COP26, which will then be followed by the fifth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-5) in early 2022.

In addition to activities regarding biological diversity within the United Nations frameworks, various intergovernmental groups and international NGOs are also focused on protecting ecosystems and halting the loss of species globally. For example, the High Ambition Coalition (HAC) for Nature and People has the central goal of protecting at least 30% of the world’s land and oceans by 2030 (30×30). The World Wildlife Fund, for its part, recently produced its 2020 Living Planet Report, “Bending the Curve of Biodiversity Loss,” which provides concrete suggestions for the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.

Back to Top

Sudan: Cabinet and Ruling Sovereign Council Pass New Law Repealing Israel Boycott Act of 1958

(May 7, 2021) On April 19, 2021, the Sudanese Cabinet and the Sovereign Ruling Council in a joint session approved a draft law to repeal the Israel Boycott Act of 1958. Because Sudan currently has no parliament, draft laws become laws by the approval of Sudan’s Ruling Sovereign Council and the Cabinet in a joint session. The Cabinet had announced on April 6, 2021, that it had approved the draft law, which it then referred the Sovereign Ruling Council. Composed of military and civilian figures, the Sovereign Ruling Council acts as the presidential council of Sudan.

The new measure comes after Sudan agreed to normalize ties with Israel in October 2020 through the mediation of the United States. Sudan had previously had a hostile relationship with Israel under former Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir, who was ousted in April 2019.

Israel Boycott Act of 1958

The Israel Boycott Act of 1958 consisted of seven provisions. It prohibited Sudanese citizens from entering into an agreement of any kind, personally or through mediation, with entities or persons residing in Israel. Furthermore, it banned any Sudanese citizen or corporation from dealing with foreign companies and establishments that had public interests, branches, or agencies in Israel. (Israel Act of 1958, art. 2.)

The act forbade any Sudanese person or entity from importing, exporting, exchanging, or trading Israeli goods, commodities, and products, whether those goods came directly or indirectly from Israel to Sudan. (Art. 3(1).)

The act directed the minister of finance and national economy to require Sudanese import-export companies to present to Sudanese customs a certificate of origin for imported goods showing that they had not come from Israel. (Art. 4, para. 1.) Likewise, the act outlawed the export of any Sudanese goods to Israel. (Art. 5.)

Finally, the act imposed criminal penalties on individuals violating the provisions of the act. It stipulated that whoever violated the provisions of the act was punishable by up to 10 years’ imprisonment or a fine determined by the court, or with both penalties. Additionally, any imported or exported goods involved were to be confiscated. (Art. 7.)

Back to Top

Egypt: President Declares State of Emergency for Health and Security Conditions

(May 6, 2021) On April 25, 2021, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi issued Presidential Decree No. 174 of 2021, ratifying the extension of Egypt’s nationwide state of emergency for three months. The presidential decree cited health and security reasons as the justifications for declaring the state of emergency.

On April 10, 2017, the Council of Ministers had approved a previous declaration of a state of emergency by the president—the first such declaration after Sisi’s election and the adoption of a new constitution in 2014. The president’s declaration was issued in response to the suicide bombing of a Christian Orthodox church north of Cairo.

The 2014 Constitution

According to the Egyptian Constitution of 2014, the president of the republic, after consultation with the cabinet, has the right to declare a state of emergency. The executive branch must submit the declaration to the House of Representative for review within seven days. (Egyptian Const. of 2014, art. 154, para. 1.)

If the declaration takes place when the House of Representatives is not in regular session, a session is called immediately to review the declaration. (Art. 154, para. 2.) The declaration must be for a specified period not exceeding three months. A two-thirds’ majority of House members must approve the declaration. In the event the House of Representatives has been dissolved, the matter is submitted to the new House in its first session. (Art. 154, para. 3.)

The president has no right to dissolve the House of Representatives while a state of emergency is in force. (Art. 154, para. 4.)

Emergency State Security Courts

Emergency Law No. 162 of 1958 established the Emergency State Security Courts, which operate only during a state of emergency. The panel of an Emergency State Security Court is composed of three judges. (Emergency Law No. 162 of 1958, art. 7, para. 2.) These courts have jurisdiction over crimes related to national security. (Art. 9.) They do not adjudicate civil disputes. (Art. 11.)

According to Prime Ministerial Resolution No. 43 of 2018, which defined the scope of jurisdiction of the Emergency State Security Courts, the courts have jurisdiction over the following crimes:

  • acts against state security
  • holding illegal demonstrations and protests
  • disrupting public transportation
  • price fixing
  • the illegal use and trading of arms
  • vandalizing places of worship
  • destroying public facilities
  • threatening the security of the society
  • intimidating other citizens
  • acts of terrorism (Art. 1.)

Back to Top

Back to Top