French against big brother project
Thu, 11 Sep 2008 01:20:07 GMT
The French people have signed an online request against the country's new controversial security database called EDVIGE.
About 130,000 people signed the request which forced the French government to revise the initial plans which would have allowed the police to collect information on anyone considered a threat to public order, EuroNews reported.
Even civil rights groups and unions are demanding that the database project not be implemented and a protest day has been scheduled for October 16.
This is while the French Defense Minister, Michelle Alliot-Marie for her part said, "The majority of people recognize there are guarantees but they fear that these will not be put in place. So what we can do is into writing. And also, what we can do is limit the amount of time that the data is held."
It is noteworthy that the new system would allow officials to track youths as young as 13.
"The matter of tracking minors is without doubt the mark of a society which considers a section of its young people as a threat," said Hélène Franco, the General Secretary of Judges and Lawyers Union.
Despite the widespread condemnation of the proposed scheme, the country's highest administrative court will be examining the EDVIGE system and will make its decision in December.
France is the only EU nation that has taken such steps to monitor its citizens to this extent but is not the only European one to create a fingerprint and DNA databases. At the moment, the UK has a 5 percent genetic data on its population.