Malmström Accused of Censorship
Swedish EU Commissioner Cecilia Malmström has proposed a number of new laws designed to tackle human trafficking and child pornography, but her plan to block websites with such content has met with a lot of criticism in the European Union.
The German Justice Department has been hesitant, citing that blocking pornographic sites could be the first step towards the censorship of political opinions, news agency TT reports.
Malmström is of the opinion that child pornography is a crime that should have no protection under freedom of expression laws. Her proposal would require EU states to block sites with such content, but each country would decide how to go about it.
The proposal wouldn’t require much of a change for Sweden: internet operators and the police in the country already collaborate to stop sites containing child pornography. Other EU countries have very different rules regarding the issue, however, which Malmström wants to standardize.
She also proposes that sex tourists be able to be tried in European courts upon returning home, and that “grooming”—when adults try to establish sexual contacts with children on the Internet—be made illegal.
The EU states and the EU parliament will discuss the proposals before any final vote is held.