18 Dec 2020 Lvl. 2
No state reply yet
Alert created on: 09 Nov 2020 n° 137/2020 France
Bill on Global Security Threatens Press Freedom
No state reply yet
The National Assembly's Laws Committee adopted a bill on "global security" tabled by the government's majority. This text is due to be considered under the fast-track procedure on 17 November. In statements to the press and during a hearing held at the National Assembly on 2 November, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin confirmed that the proposed law was being carried out "in full collaboration with the government" with the aim of "strengthening the police". The minister stressed that he had promised "to forbid the dissemination of images of police officers and gendarmes on social networks". Article 24 of the bill provides, among other things, to supplement the law of 29 July 1881 on freedom of the press as follows: "Dissemination of face images or any other identifying element of an officer belonging to the national police or the gendarmerie acting in the context of a policing operation, by any means whatsoever and on any medium whatsoever, with the aim of causing harm to his or her physical or psychological integrity, shall be punishable by one year's imprisonment and a fine of 45,000 euros". The Human Rights League and organisations representing journalists in France and around the world consider that this bill aims to disproportionately restrict the rights of journalists and freedom of the press. According to the Human Rights League, "It would allow for the arrest, placement in police custody and court referral of any journalist filming live a police operation . (...) This text also aims to prevent the revelation of cases of illegitimate police violence often covered up by the hierarchy of the officers involved".
25 Nov 2020
On 24 November 2020, the National Assembly adopted the bill in the first reading. The bill is expected to go before the Senate and must also receive a referral before the Constitutional Council before it comes into effect.
- Joint statement by LDH - SNJ - SNJ-CGT - CFDT-Journalists - FIJ - FEJ - SGJ-FO : "Une proposition de loi sécurité globale contre la liberté de la presse"
- Article published in 'Les Inrockuptibles': "Ce qu'il ne sera plus possible de faire avec la loi “sécurité globale” "
- Article published in 'L'Express' : "Pourquoi la proposition de loi "Sécurité globale" fait polémique"
- Article published by 'Reporterre': "La proposition de loi relative à la sécurité globale durcie en commission".
- Article published on the website of the Parliamentary Channel (LCP): "Sécurité globale: la proposition de loi Larem franchit l'étape de la Commission des lois".
- Article published by the daily newspaper 'Le Monde': "Loi « sécurité globale » : « un outil pour permettre aux forces de l’ordre de cacher leurs dérapages »."
- Statement by the General Assembly of the European Federation of Journalists: "France: les journalistes ont le droit de rendre compte du travail des forces de police".
- Comments and suggestions from the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism; the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression; and the Special Rapporteur on the right of peaceful assembly and freedom of association on the draft law on global security addressed to the French authorities (in French only)
- Statement by the Defender of Rights (in French only)
- Opinion issued by the Defender of Rights (in French only)
- Article published on France 24 website: "Journalists, human rights groups protest new French security bill banning images of police"
- Legislative file regarding the bill on global security (No. 3452)
18 Dec 2020
On 15 December 2020, in a letter to the Chair and members of the Law Committee of the French Senate, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights urges the senators to make substantial amendments to the General Security Bill to make it more human rights-compliant.