#2 Dialogue with experts: Crisis management – risks and vulnerabilities during the pandemic

12 May 2020

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#2 Dialogue with experts: Crisis management – risks and vulnerabilities during the pandemic

The Information and Documentation Center on NATO (IDC on NATO) from the Republic of Moldova continues the series of dialogues with security experts to analyze how the pandemic influences national security. Today we are talking about the crisis management with Ms Sanda Sandu, Associated expert, IDC on NATO; Rosian Vasiloi, security and military analyst; Mr Vadim Vieru, Lawyer, Promo-LEX Association, and Ms Elena Marzac, Executive Director, IDC on NATO. The effects of COVID-19 are fully felt in our society and affect all aspects of security. The response to the pandemic should focus primarily on saving lives and addressing the socio-economic and health consequences. The state of emergency has led to the concentration of power, derogations from human rights and fundamental freedoms. At the same time, the principles of transparency, justice and good governance must support all measures. The crisis can be an opportunity to build a new social contract based on trust, solidarity and transparency.

Experts find that:
– There are reasonable suspicions of abuses in the implementation of the decisions of the Commission for Exceptional Situations (ESC) under the umbrella of quarantine measures.
– The reaction of the authorities is chaotic and it is necessary to adjust government processes to the context of the crisis.
– The protection of whistleblowers is not sufficiently insured.
– The media and civil society play an extremely important role in monitoring government activities.
– Freedom of movement in the Transnistrian region in the context of COVID 19 is restricted.
– The separatist administration commits human rights abuses under the umbrella of quarantine measures.
– The activity of the occupation troops is extremely suspicious in the context of the amplification of military exercises and the continuous recruitment during pandemic.

Expert recommendations:
– The communication of the authorities must become more transparent, elements of strategic communication must be implemented in the period of crisis and post-crisis management, which involves planning, coordination, involvement of all actors and synchronized communication.
– The authorities must pay more attention to the events in the Transnistrian region.
– Public procurement bodies must ensure maximum transparency in decision-making processes.
– The government must also ensure transparency in the use of external aid.
– Authorities must protect whistleblowers, who report illegalities.

The Information and Documentation Centre on NATO is a noncommercial, autonomous organization set up as a part of the 2006-2009 Individual Partnership Action Plan (IPAP) Republic of Moldova-NATO. The Center promotes the Euro-Atlantic values and principles, informs the society about the multiple aspects of security, and supports the governmental institutions in security and defense sector reform.

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Photo credit: Ministry of Defense