Have any emergency powers been enacted in response to the covid-19 pandemic in your country? How long do they last, what are the provisions for extension/prolongation, what are the provisions for review?
A set of laws were adopted in March 2020 when the Parliament (French Parliament = National Assembly + Senate i.e. high and low chambers) officially passed a law establishing a state of health emergency for two months (to be prolonged based on a law to set the definitive term of the state of emergency with a maximum date of termination on 1st April 2021).
Cirular, dated 13 March 2020: Adjustment of judiciary and administrative deadlines during the health emergency timeframe, including:
Suspension of all court hearings except for emergency cases (“référés”) as of 16 March 2020
Order from 7 April 2020 authorising the use of detention and the carrying of weapons in the Mayotte department by mobile security agents deployed by the Ministry of Education and Youth
Most measures related to the March decisions summed-up in this document by the National Bars Association https://www.cnb.avocat.fr/sites/default/files/synthese_loi_covid19_22.03.20.pdf
Have any restrictions on public gatherings been imposed? How are they enforced?
Decree on 23 March 2020: all gatherings prohibited until 15 April when it involves more than 100 people.
To be updated after E.Macron’s speech on 13 April 2020 extending the lockdown until 11 May 2020.
Have restrictions on leaving home been imposed? How are they enforced?
Lockdown as of 17 March 2020 12p.m. Anyone leaving home should provide a certificate accounting for the reasons to leave home (https://www.interieur.gouv.fr/Actualites/L-actu-du-Ministere/Attestation-de-deplacement-et-de-voyage --> available in English version)
The document to be provided differs depending on whether it has do with private or professional reasons.
People living in overseas territory are also treated differently: internal border checks are reinstated for anyone travelling from these territories.
Curfews in about 170 cities/towns (as of 1 April 2020) sometimes only applicable to under-aged persons. Some of the decisions made by mayors have been contested by deparment and prefecture authorities who have declared some of them invalid (effectiveness of the curfew not demonstrated).
This is enforced mostly based on people’s discipline.
Police and gendarmerie officers have been deployed to ensure that these measures are respected: non-systematic checks, in a very varying manner throughout the country. Very heterogeneous.
Have any other new powers been granted to law enforcement authorities? (e.g. in the UK, to detain potentially infectious persons)
Not that Im aware of (you should get in touch with the National Bar’s Association though)
Are the authorities making new use of telecommunications or other data?
Not yet. To be decided soon.
Personal data: tracking/geolocation à announcement by E.Macron on 13th April that measures may be adopted within 2 weeks that clarify France’s position on the use/processing of geolocation to identify Covid19-infected subjects.
The French data protection authority (CNIL) as expressed its consultative opinion
Are there instances of law enforcement authorities exceeding powers? Can you provide a summary/summaries?
Excessive use of force by the police
Members of the Yellow Vests movement have requested for the Ombudsman to enquire on police violence 
Excessive and arbitrariness of sanctions often reported: usually associated with the very imprecise way the decree providing for reasons to leave home was adopted: what does “highly pressing family reasons” really mean for instance?
This has led 2 lawyers in Toulouse, on 9 April 2020, to question the legality of the law enforcement authorities’ powers when asking citizens to comply with obligations whose legality may be challenged. They also challenge the risk of abuse or arbitrariness in the way law enforcement officers may decide to sanction this or that person leaving home for allegedly unjustified reasons.
Also see this reaction by the National Lawyers Trade Union (10 April 2020): open letter to the French Prime Minister
Have any restrictions been placed on the media, or instructions handed down to media organisations, regarding reporting on the pandemic?
What (if any) role has been given to the military?
To follow-up on the challenging of the state’s response, you may also want to read the following contributions and NGO statement:
All decisions by the Council of State in response to the urgent claims lodged in relation to the state of emergency measures impacting civil liberties during the health crisis: https://www.conseil-etat.fr/actualites/actualites/dernieres-decisions-referes-en-lien-avec-l-epidemie-de-covid-19
 P.5 of the above Dalloz reference
 Ibid: “Ainsi, les arrêtés de couvre-feu pris en Moselle le 24 mars par les maires de Florange et de Guénange ont été invalidés par le préfet du département. Décision appuyée par la préfète du Grand Est, Josiane Chevalier, qui « incite les maires à prendre les mesures adaptées ». « Le couvre-feu peut l’être dans certains cas, il faut vraiment adopter des mesures proportionnées, rappelle-t-elle. Seul le préfet peut prendre une mesure restrictive, les arrêtés pris par les maires ne sont pas légaux. »
Il en va de même dans le Calvados. Le préfet, Philippe Court, a demandé le retrait de l’arrêté pris par le maire de Lisieux, Bernard Aubril, interdisant la circulation dans sa commune de 22 heures à 5 heures à compter du vendredi 27 mars. Le préfet a estimé que cet arrêté n’avait « pas d’effet utile » et qu’il n’était « ni fondé en droit ni approprié ».
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