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Cybercrime battle is not over, says activist

Rights groups want law scrapped altogether

Cybercrime battle is not over, says activist
Protests law continue even after the law's court suspension. (Photo by Rene Sandajan) reporter, Manila

October 10, 2012

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International media organizations and human rights groups are continuing the fight against a new cybercrime law, even after the Supreme Court suspended its implementation yesterday, while politicians say they will wait on any amendments. The Supreme Court's temporary restraining order (TRO) is effective for 120 days. "Don't think this is a finished battle," said Bob Dietz, Asia program coordinator of the Committee to Protect Journalists in New York. Journalists should be vigilant because they are "usually the prime targets of politicians out to silence critics through the legal harassment that prevailing laws have allowed," Dietz said. Petitioners against the law, meanwhile, slammed the Senate’s statement that it will amend it after the Supreme Court makes a final decision on which, if any, aspects are unconstitutional. "Why should we wait for the Supreme Court’s final decision before we act? Legislators committed a mistake in passing [the cybercrime act], and the TRO issued by the Supreme Court is a cue for Congress to amend the law,” said Raymond Palatino, youth representative in Congress. Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Senator Edgardo Angara told the media earlier that senators would wait for the court's final decision to see which provisions should be revised. "The TRO just delays the implementation of the law. The TRO is a cue for Congress leadership to expedite the processing of repeal bills now filed in both chambers of Congress,” Palatino said. "The fight against the Cybercrime Law should not die down with the court’s issuance of a TRO. Instead, we should remain vigilant and even intensify the clamor for the total scrapping." Related reports

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