SINISTER plans to criminalise “political dissent” against the EU project took a step closer to becoming reality today, prompting a dismayed response from free speech campaigners.
Human rights groups have reacted with horror after EU member states approved draconian new anti-terror laws which critics have warned could be used to suppress eurosceptic movements by force.
In a rare show of universal anger seven leading civil rights movements tore into unelected Brussels bureaucrats over the shadowy plot, warning that it endangers “fundamental rights and freedoms” including the right to protest.
Leading lawyers and campaigners have warned that it could easily be used to mercilessly crack down on eurosceptic movements and thwart protest against controversial EU initiatives.
Worry about the draconian new law is running so high that seven top human rights groups have penned an open letter to the European Union urging them to reconsider it.
Amnesty International, the European Network Against Racism (ENAR), European Digital Rights (EDRi), the Fundamental Rights European Experts (FREE) Group, Human Rights Watch, the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), and the Open Society Foundations (OSF) all called for the legislation to be comprehensively amended or else scrapped altogether.
“Nativist” politicians “have managed to successfully ride the same nationalist and xenophobic currents as that have pushed politicians in Britain and the United States to victory.”
“The media, television, they are out of phase with the population, which is fed up with being called xenophobic and racist,”–from theNew York Slimes
Supporters of Mr. Fillon during a campaign event in Chassieu, France, on Tuesday. “He really respects French values, and that is very, very important to us,” one supporter said.
The legislation also advocates shutting down websites for arbitrary reasons
Last month in France, where the measure was first coined, telecoms giant Orange was ordered to shut down Google and Wikipedia for an entire morning, with Internet users being directed to a French interior ministry website, where their IP addresses were then recorded by the authorities.
The EU has rushed to agree on a vaguely worded counterterrorism law that endangers fundamental rights and freedoms
She said: “There is no list of blocked sites and there is no right of appeal until pretty much after the fact.
“Once we start accepting this type of blocking, it is difficult to stop expanding it to other subjects.
“It is used to detain or imprison individuals without any proof of them being dangerous or being radicalised.”
The law has been brought in as Europe tries to clamp down on a growing terrorist threat, with France, Germany and Belgium all having suffered Islamist attacks in the last 18 months.