A recent editorial in Nature Magazine notes that academics should not have to live in fear in pursuit of their studies, but that more often than has been true in the past, it is becoming more frequent. There are more locations where this has been a problem this year: Chile, Hong Kong, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon where demonstrations have taken place. Also, scientists have been arrested and sentenced in Iran, but also there have been cases of human rights violations regarding academics in 56 countries this past year.
(Nature Magazine, Academics Should Not Need to Live in Fear for the Pursuit of Their Science, November 27, 2019 – Editorial)
Additionally, there is an article in Science News, What Happens When Governments Crack Down on Scientists Just Doing Their Jobs? that addresses this situation in great detail. (Science News, What Happens When Governments Crack Down on Scientists Just Doing Their Jobs? by Sujata Gupta, December 6, 2019).