'Bulgaria Is Not Big Brother' Protest Receives Staunch SupportDomestic | January 12, 2010, Tuesday // 16:27| views
The January 14 "Bulgaria Is Not Big Brother" rally comes exactly one year after public unrest at the same location in Sofia triggered riots, violence and police brutality. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency
The protest rally under the motto “Bulgaria Is Not big Brother” has received the support of over 25 political parties and organizations.
The rally is scheduled for January 14 in downtown Sofia in front of the building of the Parliament over amendments of the Electronic Communications Act.
One of the amendments is the proposal to create an interface, which will allow the Ministry of Interior direct access to the data from private emails and calls and mobile devices positioning of every single citizen.
Earlier Tuesday, the Chair of the Parliamentary Internal Affairs Committee, Atanas Atanasov, confirmed that the government has dispensed with the original interface proposal and the Interior Ministry will insist on records to be provided by all mobile and internet operators a maximum of 2 hours after a request is made in cases of serious crimes, as part of the amendments.
The three main mobile operators in Bulgaria however later made it clear that the 2 hour demand was not possible to meet as their systems do not allow such quick access.
The rally comes exactly one year after public unrest at the same location in Sofia triggered riots, violence and police brutality. The organizers vow the march will be peaceful this time and all measures will be undertaken to counter acts of vandalism and looting.
The organizers' main demand is that the cabinet withdraws the amendments and declares the Act anti-constitutional.
The main political forces supporting the demand are the Greens, the party of former Tsar and Prime Minister, Simeon Saxe-Coburg, National Movement for Stability and Prosperity (NMSP) and the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP).
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