Don't miss




Guinea's opposition calls for election to be annulled

Read more


Media reactions to Ankara bombing

Read more


Palestinian unrest 'does not look to be organised'

Read more


A third intifada?

Read more


Ankara Bombing

Read more


Australia's coal war

Read more


Former ECB chief Trichet: Reforms 'long overdue' in Greece

Read more


Sweden's defence minister: 'We are going to increase our defence budget'

Read more


Music show: Bob Dylan, Alela Diane and Ryan Francesconi

Read more

An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.



Latest update : 2009-10-26

Contoversy in UK over police databases for “domestic extremists”

Several articles in today’s press cover infringements of civil liberties by UK authorities.

A report in 2007 placed Britain in the bottom five countries for its record on privacy and surveillance, says the International Herald Tribune. The paper reports on one Briton who is fighting back.

Jenny Paton wanted to get her children into a local school in the town of Poole but authorities suspected of her of having falsified her address. To confirm this, local authorities started spying on her. They obtained copies of her phone billing records and one official followed her and logged the movements of the woman and her three children. Under a law enacted in 2000, it is fully legal for local authorities to follow residents secretly.

Jenny Paton is outraged at this infringement of her privacy. “The government has absolutely no interest in spying on law-abiding people.”

In a recent House of Lords Constitution Committee report it was stated, “Successive UK governments have gradually constructed one of the most extensive and technologically advanced surveillance systems in the world.”

In a related story, today’s Guardian leads with police databases that are logging ‘domestic extremists’.

This is the kind of document the police now have access to.

It’s a spotter card, issued by police to identify individuals they consider to be trouble-makers because they have appeared at a number of demonstrations.

This card was dropped by police at a demonstration against Britain’s largest arms fair in 2005.

Databases have been compiled with photos of citizens who are considered a possible threat – activists and demonstrators for the most part who have no criminal record. They are called “domestic extremists” by the police – a term which has no legal basis, the Guardian says.

What’s more vehicles associated with protesters are being tracked via a nationwide system of automatic number plate recognition cameras. One man who has no criminal record was stopped 25 times in less than three years after a ‘protest marker’ was placed against his car after he attended a small protest against duck and pheasant shooting.

Other stories in today’s international papers:

Opposition SPD party chief accuses German coalition government of social injustice and the breaking of election promises

New York Times
For News, Canada’s Leader Looks South of the Border

Sydney Morning Herald
The Sydney Harbour Bridge was closed yesterday morning for a picnic with 6,000 people attending

The Independent
School with a zoo is named UK’s greenest




2015-10-12 Turkey

Ankara attack: 'The bitter rage of mourning'

Turkey mourns its dead following Saturday's twin bombings in Ankara. The Turkish-language paper Vatan headlines "The bitter rage of mourning". Ahmet Hakann, writing in the...

Read more

2015-10-12 education

Ankara attack: 'The worst scenario'

French papers lead on Saturday's attack in Ankara that killed dozens of people. Libération says Turks now have to avoid sliding into a civil war. La Croix, the Catholic daily,...

Read more

2015-10-09 Syria

'If you thought Blatter was bad...'

Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice explains in the Washington Post how she feels America can counter Putin's moves in Syria. Rice argues that if diplomacy follows the...

Read more

2015-10-09 FIFA

'Carton rouge' for Platini

Platini gets a red card. "Carton rouge," says Le Parisien-Aujourd'hui-en-France. The French football star is "not the exemplary leader FIFA needs", it says. Platini on Thursday...

Read more

2015-10-08 Vladimir Putin

NYT: 'Is Vladimir Putin trying to teach the West a lesson in Syria?'

Russian President Vladimir Putin flexes his muscles. He's firing cruise missiles at Syrian targets and, on his 63rd birthday on Wednesday, scored seven goals in an ice hockey...

Read more