Police law on cell phone network to be revised after criticism

Police law on cell phone network to be revised after criticism

In concrete terms, this should apply to hostage-taking, bombings and rampages – but not to demonstrations, as the opposition has suggested.

Stahlknecht was responding to criticism from the left, among others, who considered the wording too vague. According to the draft, cell phone network shutdowns during violent demonstrations are also conceivable, said left-wing member of parliament henriette quade. It was undisputed that nets could be shut down if someone wanted to detonate a bomb over them. Net shutdowns during demonstrations were not allowed, however. The greens had also rejected the law, saying it gave the police too broad powers.

The previous draft of the police law had allowed the disconnection of the networks to "avert a present danger to the existence or security of the federation or of a country, or to the life, limb or freedom of a person". According to stahlknecht, there were no plans to use it to enable grid shutdowns during demonstrations.

In the explanatory memorandum to the law, examples were given, such as remotely detonating a bomb by cell phone.

The draft passed by the black-red state government is currently being discussed by the state parliament. The changes could now be taken up in the committees, explained the ministry of the interior.

The draft had already been criticized in other respects. There had been discussions about the question under which circumstances compulsory tests for HIV and other infectious diseases should be allowed in the police law. The SPD had backed away from its own proposal after nationwide criticism. However, the CDU is sticking to the idea of allowing testing in exceptional cases, even without a criminal offense and with the approval of a judge. This should apply, for example, if a sanitarian could have become infected while working on a wound, but the patient refuses the examination.

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