25 May 2017

News Story: UN privacy expert shoots down Japan's complaints about 'anti-conspiracy' bill criticism

United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy, Joseph Cannataci has reportedly fired back at the Japanese government for expressing displeasure with a letter he wrote criticizing Japan's so-called "anti-conspiracy" bill.

The letter, dated May 18, 2017, was sent to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and published on the website of the U.N. Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner.

U.N. Special Rapporteurs are unpaid, independent experts appointed by the U.N. Human Rights Council to report to the U.N. on certain issues in specific countries. In 2015, Cannataci, an expert in IT legislation, became the first person to ever be appointed Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy.

In his letter, Cannataci expressed serious concern "according to the information (he had) received," that "the proposed bill, in its current form and in combination with other legislation, may affect the exercise of the right to privacy as well as other fundamental public freedoms given its potential broad application."

Cannataci also wrote, "In particular I am concerned by the risks of arbitrary application of this legislation given the vague definition of what would constitute the 'planning' and the 'preparatory actions' and given the inclusion of an overbroad range of crimes ... which are apparently unrelated to terrorism and organized crime."

Read the full story at The Mainichi