EFF.org Updates by Danny O’Brien and Danny O’Brien
Today the European Court of Justice declared the EU’s Data Retention Directive invalid, declaring that the mass collection of Internet data in Europe entailed a “wide-ranging and particularly serious interference with the fundamental rights to respect for private life and to the protection of personal data.” The Directive ordered European states to pass laws that obliged Internet intermediaries to log records on their users’ activity, keep them for up to two years, and provide access to the police and security services. The ECJ joins the United Nations’ Human Rights Committee which last month called upon the United States to refrain from imposing mandatory retention of data by third parties.
Stanford Center for Internet and Society by Jennifer Granick
Today, the European Court of Justice struck down the European Union?s 2006 Data Retention Directive. That policy required member states to force communications companies to store citizens’ telecommunications data for six to 24 months. Read more »about Big Privacy Win in the EU
Global Voices Online
On International Romani Day (April 8) the French branch of Amnesty International wrote a statement entitled ?Facing a spiral of violence, the Roma of Europe are demanding justice and protection?. The statement is especially critical of the treatment of the Roma community in France, the Czech Republic and Greece [fr]:
Hurriyet Daily News
Greek unions held a 24-hour anti-austerity strike Wednesday, shutting down ferry services to the country’s world-famous islands
The unrest is spreading in Eastern Ukraine: pro-Russian forces occupied several public buildings on Monday, to which units of the central government in Kiev reacted with evacuations and arrests. Commentators fear Eastern Ukraine could also fall to Russia and call for far-reaching autonomy rights for the region to defuse the conflict.
Open Europe blog
A bigger threat to the EU
than the UK’s ‘right to reside test’?
The Barroso Commission’s term is rapidly coming to an end and Viviane Reding and Laszlo Andor are neck and neck in a pulsating contest for who will claim the wooden spoon – the award for worst Commissioner. Reding held the lead for a long time but Andor may have just caught up after his comments about immigration at an event yesterday on engaging the youth in EU politics.
Social Europe Journal by Gary Titley
I had twenty exciting years as a Member of the European Parliament. During that time many momentous events took place and it was a privilege to have played my small part in many of them.
EurActiv.com by Laurens Cerulus
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán won a clear victory in the parliamentary elections on Sunday. With almost all the votes counted his right-wing nationalist Fidesz party had secured 44.5 percent of the vote. Orbán’s political style goes down well with his people, commentators conclude, and fear that the triumphal march of nationalists and populists will continue in the European elections.
open Democracy News Analysis – by Louis Karaolis
EU rules place the burden of processing asylum requests on periphery countries like Greece, where so many asylum-seekers enter the EU, even as EU-inspired austerity measures undermine Greece?s capacity to treat asylum-seekers fairly, and contribute to the rise in extremist violence against them.
open Democracy News Analysis – by Alex Sakalis / The newly announced Le Pen-Wilders alliance in the European parliament has re-ignited speculation about the rise of the far-right in Europe. What can we expect from this new EU supergroup?
Open Europe blog
open Democracy News Analysis – by Hilde C. Stephansen and Deirdre Lee
As part of our series of interviews with practitioners involved in public participation initiatives, Participation Now researcher Hilde C. Stephansen spoke to Deirdre Lee at Insight-NUI Galway, about Puzzled by Policy, a European Commission funded project that aimed to engage citizens in the policy making process.
Ideas on Europe
Nicola Francesco Dotti, Bas Van Heur and André Spithoven
Looking for the geographical dimensions of Framework Programmes
The EU Framework Programme (FP) is by far the most important European intervention for research and technological development (RTD). While this policy has been repeatedly reformed, the FP has also shaped European research since 1984. The largest part of the FP aims to promote transnational RTD projects granting funds for ?excellent research? (the so-called ?FP-Cooperation?, which covers about two thirds of the whole budget), irrespective of their geographical localisation. However, as our study on the geographical distribution of FP participation shows, ?excellent? research is also unevenly spread across Europe.
Ideas on Europe by Osmi Anannya The Crimea crisis has taken over news reports and airwaves because for the last couple of days it has felt like there was a new age war being fought in Europe over the Penninsula formerly administered by Ukraine. The region is home to many ethnic Russians and a small group of Ukrainians and Crimean Tartars and if the recentmost pro-Russian referendum vote for Crimea is to be taken seriously, then it could soon unravel political conflicts over Russia?s other former Soviet states
The hidden injuries of asylum housing ? inflicted by G4S.
Luke is a young African asylum seeker. We met over a coffee in a drop in centre in the North East of England. We talked about his everyday life as a new asylum seeker. He was bored and frustrated waiting for interviews and decisions on his asylum claim. He told me: ?I do not know why they want to humiliate us ? we are simply trying to get a place of safety?.
OK, so what do EU chief diplomat Catherine Ashton, US assistant secretary of state Victoria Nuland, Estonian foreign minister Urmas Paet, Russian ambassador to Eritrea Sergei Bakharev, and his colleague in Zimbabwe Igor Chubarev all have in common? They?ve all had their mobile phone calls USRP, a few hundred dollars? worth, and copies of GNU Radio, OpenBTS, and a few other open-source software packages, all of which are entirely free.Osmocom will be useful too, also free. A couple of £15 Motorola C115 phones. And of course a laptop. (If you just want to listen to voicemail, well, call Glenn Mulcaire.)
Spanish PM Mariano Rajoy has refused even to acknowledge the possibility of a Catalan referendum on independence, yet his options to save the integrity of the Spanish state are dwindling.