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Conservative’s attitude of refusal is shady

Bild: Fritz Schumann

PRESS RELEASE – Bruxelles, 18 October 2017
On the radical opposition of the European Parliament’s People´s Party Group against EU-wide harmonized data protection rules for electronic communications such as telephone calls, SMS and services such as WhatsApp and Skype which are proposed with the ePrivacy regulation, Jan Philipp Albrecht, the European Parliament’s rapporteur for the General Data Protection Regulation and Spokesperson for Justice and Home Affairs for the Greens, comments:

„The Socialist, Green, Liberal and Left Groups have offered the Conservatives far-reaching compromises. However, the EPP Group is following the radical views of a few parliamentarians who, as a direct industry lobby, are campaigning against the protection of communication data and thus for a massive reduction in data protection.
„More than two-thirds of consumers and a whole range of internet companies in the European Union are calling for a stronger protection of communications data, while the Conservative’s European Parliamentary Group represents solely the profit interests of large US corporations and a few industrial associations and opposes the interests of consumers. It therefore intends to release communication data for other commercial purposes without consent.
„The attitude of refusal is utterly shady and the leadership of the EPP Group should quickly free themselves from the clutches of a few radicals who have already shown with the General Data Protection Regulation that they are not interested in a reasonable compromise for a uniform European legal situation. Uniformly high standards would be a great opportunity for the EU digital economy, which can already score in competition with Silicon Valley with its strong rules on confidentiality and data protection for its Internet services.
„I invite the reasonable Conservative Members of Parliament to vote in favour of the balanced compromises on the e-Privacy-Regulation in the forthcoming votes, despite of their Group’s position.“

Tomorrow (Thursday, 19 October) MEPs of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) will vote on the Parliament’s position on the Commission’s proposal for the ePrivacy regulation. By voting, MEPs give the mandate for the forthcoming negotiations with the Council. The Conservatives reject the compromises proposed by rapporteur Marju Lauristin (Socialist Democrats), Greens, Liberals and the Leftists. Even without the Conservative’s votes, a majority is foreseeable for the compromise text and the negotiating mandate.