Will the German Senat (Bundesarat) support an "area of freedom, security and justice" with a "guarantee for the principles of democracy and respect for human rights", according to Com 2002/0247 which EU is building up with the help of the Fundamental Rights Agency (COM(2005)280)?
auf Deutsch: http://wkeim.bplaced.net/files/0506bundesrat.htm
Walter Keim, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Torshaugv. 2 C
N-7020 Trondheim, 8. June 2005
Leipziger Straße 3-4
Copy: EU Commission, EU Parliament, EU
Council, Council of Europe, OSCE, OECD and UN
Will Realization of Freedom of Information in Germany Fail in the Bundesrat?
Freedom of Information also called access to public documents is an essential aspect of transparency which is itself an essential part of democracy. This citizens right is found in more then 60 states all over the world, many of which consider it as a basic right based on their constitution.
Germany is (in the federation and 12 of 16 states) up to now the only major country in EU, Europe, OSCE, OECD and developed civilized countries without Freedom of Information.
The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU gives Freedom of Information in Article 42, access to documents in Article 41 (2), the right to complain in Article 43 (Ombudsman) and the right to fair answers within reasonable time in Article 41 (1).
UN, OSCE and AOS conform in their Joint Declaration of 6. December 2004, that Access to Information is a human right:
The right to access information held by public authorities is a fundamental human right which should be given effect at the national level through comprehensive legislation (for example Freedom of Information Acts) based on the principle of maximum disclosure, establishing a presumption that all information is accessible subject only to a narrow system of exceptions.
In Germany a Freedom of Information law has been promised since 1998. The coalition parties have 2004 proposed a law. The federal parliament Bundestag has approved this law 3. June 2005 against the votes of the conservative CDU/CSU opposition following nationalistic antiliberal Bavarian spirit, e g. CSU hillbilly Zeitlmann. The committee of interior will discuss the subject 21. June 2005. The Senate (Bundesrat) will vote 8. July 2005. The Senate (Bundesrat) has not put Freedom of Information on the agenda of the meeting 17. June 2005.
All over Europe e. g. in Nordrhein-Westfalen (2001 with votes of all parties also CDU), Turkey (2003), Switzerland (2004) and Serbia (2004) all parties contributed to laws with have been approved without votes against Freedom of Information.
According to press reports of the Frankfurter Rundschau online dated 7. june 2005 the conservative majority in the Bundesrat plans to stop the Freedom of Information law. Will the Free Democratic Party (FDP) defend civil rights as promised? The conservative CDU/CSU finds the FOI law unnecessary and is quoted: "The law will be buried".
I appeal to the conservative opposition majority in the Bundesrat to put aside party egoism to realize the citizen and human right of Freedom of Information in Germany, as one of the last major countries in Europe. Germany will follow the international development in civilized states and avoid falling back bananas republics being last of all.
Freedom of Information with principle of maximum disclosure: http://wkeim.bplaced.net/files/ifg-hearing-i.htm
Who invites the Human Rights Commissioner?: http://wkeim.bplaced.net/files/coe-031128.htm
Will OSCE promote Freedom of Information? : http://wkeim.bplaced.net/files/osce-050106.htm
Copy: German press council, Oberverwaltungsgericht Berlin 1 L 42.05, Parlaimentary Ombudsman, Sweden
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