This is once more an edition which is devoted exclusively to internal security legislation in the Federal Republic of Germany. Strong public pressure forced the coalition of Christian Democrats and Free Democrats to change earlier drafts of the legislation from 1985. In this issue we publish the following revised drafts that were introduced into the West German parliament in April 1989:
– the law concerning the cooperation between the federal and state internal intelligence agencies
* the Military intelligence service act (MAD)
* the Federal espionage service act (BND)
* the Federal data protection act
* the public service procedure act – regulating the handling of personal data in public service agencies.
Besides these drafts which are introduced into parliament as a single set of measures, we also present other laws and drafts that are concerned with the handling of data by internal security agencies:
* a draft for a criminal procedure act which regulates the dataprocessing of public prosecution agen-cies
* a new law which has been passed by the legislator in April that allows the police and intelligence agencies to survey all new technological means of communication (telefax etc,) and requires that private companies in the communication sector assist the police and intelligence agencies in its surveillance of private communication
* a new law, also recently passed, that allows the police not only to survey demonstrations but also the preparation process with audio and video means. Additionally we document legislation regulating
* the constitutional right of public demonstrations
* the introduction of chief witnesses in trails against socalled terrorists.
We add materials and legislation acts to this issue that we think to be important in giving a full picture of the present state of internal security laws in the FRG.
The editorial discusses the meaning of this new legislative effort for the constitutional rights of citizens and tries to highlight the political and sociological background of the law making process.
In the Seventies the structure, the tactical concepts and technical means of the police and the intelligence agencies in the FRG were undergoing rapid changes. Two important developments correspond to those changes: On the one hand a new political activism with different goals and strategies, on the other a decisive change in the policing strategies of the state, brought about by the Social Democrats. Risk and crisis prevention being their objective, they aimed at a general modernization of the state bureaucracy. „Information“ became one of the main ressources of state policing – supported by new technological means and computerization.
One immediate result of those policies was a ruling passed down by the German Supreme Court in 1983 (the socalled public census decision), in which strict rules were set for the collection and processing of information of citizens and new legislation was called for. After the CDU/FDP coa-lition came into power in 1982 they started to draw up new legislation since fall 1985 (see CILIP No. 21). Under insistent public pressure revised drafts were presented in the course of the last years (see CILIP No. 21, 23, 29, 31).
Summarizing our evaluation of these drafts and, partly already, laws, we come to the following conclusions:
* Formally at least they meet the demands of the Supreme Court decision by providing a legislative basis for state datacollection and processing
* In their substance most of the proposals and laws contradict the principles set by the Supreme Court as well as constitutional rights of citizens in this country
* One of the major new developments enforced by this legislation is the granted right to the police to adopt intelligence measures such as the deployment of undercover agents and video surveillance of the population
* An uncontrollable flow of data can be set up between the police and intelligence and secret service agencies. Additionally intelligence agencies are given the right to pass on information to private agencies and foreign governmental agencies.
* Social security agencies as well as semi-state organizations like the TÜV are forced to open their computer based information systems on request of the security agencies. Not the „owner“ of the information but the requesting agency has to decide on the legality of the request.
So far public protest has managed to delay the quick passing of certain legislation measures. CILIP wants to support this protest with information and critical reasoning.