State under scrutiny for surveillance during G20 Summit

On 17th August 2017, the German government adopted the first Open Government Partnership (OGP) National Action Plan, which presents new ideas to increase transparency and open data, as well as strengthen citizen participation and enhance the effectiveness of government. This new OGP framework is based on the a continuous exchange between government and citizens. During the next two years, the Ministry of the Interior and the OGP Working Group, which is made up of civil society organisations, plan to continue their dialogue on the constructive implementation of the Action Plan.  

Peaceful Assembly

On 6th September 2017 in Berlin, organisations campaigning for digital rights, journalists’ associations and others mobilised to protest against surveillance under the slogan, "Celebrate freedom - Save fundamental rights". In regards to the government's uptick in surveillance, Michael Rediske from Reporters without Borders expressed concern over the threat it poses to the media, stating that:

"..the list of monitoring laws is becoming longer and more threatening for freedom of the press. We do not want to accept this".

During the G20 Summit in Hamburg, local and federal police reportedly exchanged data with foreign official interlocutors in order to obtain information for border controls and checks on persons. The surveillance measures adopted before and during the G20 Summit, including IMSI catcher, radio cell interrogation, silent SMS, telecommunication monitoring, video surveillance, were deemed inadequate. Therefore, police requested that citizens upload mobile videos and photos with potentially incriminating material involving protesters onto a police platform.

According to Netzpolitik.Org, there will be parliamentary inquiries and more investigation into the state's actions during the G20 Summit to assess the extent to which the German security authorities interfered with the right to freedom of assembly.

Expression

Following on from the scandal over withdrawing 32 press workers' accreditation during the G20 Summit in Hamburg, tens of thousands of people have reportedly been unjustifiably recorded on police and other constitutional protection offices' databases. Among the 32 affected journalists, only 23 have been informed of the reasons for the loss of accreditation to cover the G20 Summit events. In addition, it was reported that mistakes and false evaluations were made when the accreditation was withdrawn.