Will EU Human Rights Abuses on Freedom of Speech be Addressed?

Will the European Union’s new Special Representative on Human Rights pay attention to human rights to freedom of speech within Europe, Andrew Brons MEP has asked.
Speaking during a debate in the European Parliament this week held on the topic of the appointment of an EU Special Representative on Human Rights, Mr Brons, referring to a report which mentions freedom of expression (including on the internet), said that only a few months ago the Commissioner for Home Affairs was advocating the criminal prosecution of the Dutch Freedom Party, because of content on its party website.
“Many member states prosecute and imprison people for publishing heretical opinions, in speech, written word or in electronic form.
“The freedom to express oneself is important but not as important as the freedom to hear or to read what has been said or written by others.
“The British Government is currently proposing a law, the Communications Data Bill, which will provide the security services with access to all of the websites visited by everybody in the United Kingdom.
“If somebody in a sensitive government job were, just out of curiosity, to log onto a disapproved of party website, that person’s job would be at risk.
“Freedom of association is mentioned prominently but there have been bans or attempted bans on parties in Belgium and Germany.
“In the EU, Human Rights are for export only. Perhaps, the person appointed as Special Representative will pay attention to these concerns,” he said.

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