10:48 GMT02 June 2020
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    Over 125,000 people have signed a petition launched by French activists calling for a repeal of the controversial draft law on surveillance.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — This figure constitutes over 80 percent of the votes needed to deliver the message directly to parliament, to be followed up by offline action.

    The move comes as the bill, which could give intelligence services a wide range of surveillance powers, is due to be put to a vote in the National Assembly, France’s lower house of parliament, later in the day.

    The petition on the Change.org website reads:

    “We solemnly urge Prime Minister Manuel Valls to withdraw the draft act on surveillance and French parliamentarians to reject this text. We call on French civil society to mobilize for this purpose.”

    The organizers of the appeal claim that if the law passes, the country's intelligence services will be invested with overly excessive power, posing a threat to people’s civil liberties.

    According to the activists, the bill would allow France’s surveillance agencies to gain access to personal data, monitor citizens suspected of terrorist links or plotting terrorist attacks as well as granting the right to oversee people without a court order.

    The draft law, presented to the French parliament in mid-March, has already been approved by the parliament's Law Commission.


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    France, petition, surveillance, French National Assembly, Manuel Valls
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