Speaking in Berlin at an Internet and Human Rights conference hosted by the German Foreign Office, Westerwelle described the devastating effect that surveillance technology can have on fledgling democratic and civil rights movements:
Drones are back in the headlines, with the news that the Ministry of Defence plans to develop unmanned underwater vehicles for use in submarine warfare. Human rights groups have already raised concerns over the UK’s use of airborne military drones, which have played a key role in UK operations in Afghanistan since 2008.
Privacy International welcomes reports that the French Government has come out against the export of surveillance technology to oppressive regimes. According to the French website reflets.info, the State Secretary for the Digital Economy Fleur Pellerin announced her opposition to such exports last Friday, during a radio show hosted by Le Monde and public broadcaster FranceCulture.