EU pushes for new powers to monitor air travel following Paris attacks

Bruno Waterfield reports in the Telegraph that the EU will seek new powers to monitor air travel and the movements of air passengers, in the aftermath of terror attacks in Paris on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and the Jewish Hyper Cacher supermarket.

The push for enhanced travel surveillance follows concerns that the EU’s free movement zone makes it harder for security services keep an eye on jihadis with links to Syria or Iraq.

However, Statewatch, a European civil liberties watchdog, criticised the plan and accused the EU of a coming up with a list of unworkable and legally questionable measures unlikely to prevent the sort of attacks seen in Paris.

Ben Hayes, a specialist in EU security policy for Statewatch said:

“On the basis of what is now known about the Charlie Hebdo attacks, the need to review existing security arrangements far outweighs the need for any new legislation.”

George Osborne hints at bringing back Snooper’s Charter after Paris attack

Ben Riley-Smith reports in the Telegraph that George Osborne has dropped hints that the Conservatives want to bring back the Communications Data Bill, otherwise known as the Snooper’s Charter.

It follows the terrorist attacks in Paris on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and the Jewish Hyper Cacher supermarket, and claims by the Head of MI5 that al-Qaeda is planning a Paris-style terrorist atrocity against Britain.

Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP chairman of Parliament’s intelligence and security committee (ISC), also called for the security services to be given extra powers to monitor the internet.

The Conservatives were forced to drop the Communications Data Bill, which would have given the security services more powers to access online communications, in 2013 following opposition from the Liberal Democrats.

Anti-terror plan to spy on toddlers

Robert Mendick, and Robert Verkaik report in the Daily Telegraph that Nursery school staff and registered childminders will have to report toddlers at risk of becoming terrorists, under counter-terrorism measures proposed by the Government.

The proposal is in a Home Office consultation document to accompany the Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill, currently going through parliament.  It suggests that nurseries and along with schools and universities have a duty to prevent people being drawn into terrorism.  However, critics claim the plan is heavy-handed and turns teachers and carers as “spies”.  There are also concerns over the practicalities of making it a legal requirement for staff to inform on toddlers.

David Davis, MP said:

“It is hard to see how this can be implemented. It is unworkable. I have to say I cannot understand what they [nursery staff] are expected to do.  Are they supposed to report some toddler who comes in praising a preacher deemed to be extreme? I don’t think so”.