Ukraine proposes Internet restrictions in name of national security

Ukraine’s parliament ‘has moved a step closer to giving the Security Service the right to block websites without a court order, supposedly in the name of national security’ according to the UNIAN Information Agency. Opponents fear the bill would give power to authorities to determine whether specific information was prohibited, resulting in blockage and/or fines. A first attempt in 2017 to put the bill on the parliamentary agenda failed. Human rights groups call the bill a violation of freedom of expression, which is guaranteed in Ukraine’s Constitution. They fear that ‘the definition could be abused, while any online discussion of government decisions aimed at influencing decision-making might be labeled “technological terrorism”‘, effectively initiating state censorship over the Internet, similar to the case in Russia.