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What is the controversy about France’s new security law?

Topics Covered: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.

What is the controversy about France’s new security law?


Context:

France government introduced a controversial security bill in parliament that seeks to provide greater powers and protections for police officers.

 Controversial provisions:

Enabling the police to organise ground and air mass surveillance, while at the same time restricting the filming of police officers.

  • Articles 21 and 22 of the proposed “global security” law allow the police and the gendarmes (paramilitary forces) to use body cameras and drones to film citizens, and allow the recorded footage to be live streamed to the command post.
  • Article 24 penalises publishing “the image of the face or any other element of identification” of a police or paramilitary official who is acting in “a police operation”, if the dissemination is done with “the intent of harming their physical or mental integrity”.

What are the opponents of the new law saying?

Article 24 would make it harder to cover public events and record instances of police violence, thus making it more difficult to hold officers accountable.

What have the bill’s supporters said?

The government has insisted that it does not intend to target press freedoms, and that the new law is aimed at protecting police officers and their families from online trolling and harassment when off duty.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  • Just have a brief overview of the law and the country which enacted this law.

Mains Link:

Discuss the concerns associated with this law.

Sources: Indian Express.