Austria strengthens police intelligence to ward off terrorists

Austria's police intelligence service received broader powers to investigate potential terrorists and extremists when parliament adopted a new security bill Wednesday night despite criticism by privacy advocates.

Under the new law, investigators will be allowed to preventively collect communication and telephone data based on the mere suspicion that someone might plan against Austria's constitutional order.

This includes not only actual terrorist attacks, but also incitement to violence, as well as the formation of armed ideological or religious groups.

The law was supported by legislators from the ruling coalition of Social Democrats and the centre-right People's Party.

The Greens and the far-right Freedom Party opposed the legislation. Along with privacy activists, they said the law contains no adequate oversight mechanism to control investigators.

Last update: Thu, 28/01/2016 - 03:59

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