Denmark approves new police powers ahead of Copenhagen
By Felicity Carus | guardian.co.uk
Controversial legislation gives police sweeping powers of 'pre-emptive' arrest and extends custodial sentences for acts of civil disobedience.
The Danish parliament today passed legislation which will give police sweeping powers of "pre-emptive" arrest and extend custodial sentences for acts of civil disobedience. The "deeply worrying" law comes ahead of the UN climate talks which start on 7 December and are expected to attract thousands of activists from next week.
Under the new powers, Danish police will be able to detain people for up to 12 hours whom they suspect might break the law in the near future. Protesters could also be jailed for 40 days under the hurriedly drafted legislation dubbed by activists as the "turmoil and riot" law. The law was first announced on 18 October.
The Danish ministry of justice said that the new powers of "pre-emptive" detention would increase from 6 to 12 hours and apply to international activists. If protesters are charged with hindering the police, the penalty will increase from a fine to 40 days in prison. Protesters can also be fined an increased amount of 5,000 krona (671 Euros) for breach of the peace, disorderly behaviour and remaining after the police have broken up a demonstration.
The Danish police also separately issued a statement in August (pdf) applying new rules and regulations for protests at the climate conference, warning that "gatherings that may disturb the public order must not take place".
Earlier this month, the Guardian published a letter by environmental activists that described the new law as "deeply worrying" and called for the Danish government to uphold their right to legitimate protest.
Tannie Nyboe, a spokewoman from campaigning group Climate Justice Action in Denmark, said the new law was designed to control civil disobedience during the summit. "These laws are a big restraint in people's freedom of speech and it will increase the police repression for anyone coming to Copenhagen to protest. Denmark normally boasts of how open and democratic a country we are. With this law we can't boast about this anymore.
"It will increase the repression of any protester or activist coming to Copenhagen. This law creates an image of anyone concerned about climate change being a criminal, which will of course also influence the general treatment of any activist who comes into contact with the police or other authorities."
A Danish justice ministry confirmed that the laws had been passed today and would come into effect before the climate conference starts on 7 December.
Trilateralist Replaces Bilderberger to Chair Copenhagen Summit
Has Anyone Read the Copenhagen Agreement?
UN Climate Change Treaty to be signed in Copenhagen December 2009 - "A World Government will be Created" (Video)
The Road to Copenhagen Part I: The Club of Rome
The Road to Copenhagen Part II: Rise of the Social Engineers
The Road to Copenhagen part III: A "Planetary Regime" in the Making
World "Leaders" totally Ignore Climategate, Says: "Momentum Building on Climate Change"
Latest News from our Front Page
Immigrants in Hungary Head to German Border on Government Buses and Walking on Foot
Footage showed migrants — frustrated with the Hungarian authorities, who have blocked their way by rail — starting the walk from Budapest toward Germany. Others remained in a standoff with the police.
Budapest - After a day of defiance by increasingly desperate refugees, the government of Hungary metaphorically threw up its hands Friday and offered to bus thousands of migrants to ...
Generation P. Russia awaken!
From Youtube description: The first Russian cult film of the new millenium
Watch a preview here:
Blonde Parade in Latvia
Youtube description: Hundreds of blonde Latvian women marched through the streets of Riga to to lift nation's economy.
Shocking: Young Girls Convulse On The Floor After HPV Shot
Video appears to show widespread adverse reaction to Gardasil vaccine
Shocking video posted to Facebook shows a group of young girls convulsing on the floor after reportedly taking the Gardisil vaccine somewhere in Bolivia.
White Women Are Getting Fed Up
White women speak out against the claim that "White women have things so much easier than every other people."
This video has been flagged as "inappropriate" by Youtube:
Don't miss the Radio 3Fourteen interview with Lana, Sinead and Megan.
|More News » |