Journalists criticise World Cup anti-terror checks

14th November 2005, Comments 0 comments

14 November 2005, MUNICH - The German Journalist Union (DJV) on Monday sharply criticised security plans for next year's World Cup in the country which involve security checks on its members. Under the plan, Germany's federal criminal police office, the Bundeskriminalamt (BKA), and the country's internal secret service, the Verfassungsschutz (VS), plan to run clearance checks on journalists before they can report on matches from stadiums. "This process goes against every rule and every right," DJV chairman

14 November 2005

MUNICH - The German Journalist Union (DJV) on Monday sharply criticised security plans for next year's World Cup in the country which involve security checks on its members.

Under the plan, Germany's federal criminal police office, the Bundeskriminalamt (BKA), and the country's internal secret service, the Verfassungsschutz (VS), plan to run clearance checks on journalists before they can report on matches from stadiums.

"This process goes against every rule and every right," DJV chairman Michael Konken complained Monday.

According to a report in the weekly Focus magazine, anyone working in a World Cup stadium will require clearance from the security services in an effort to prevent terrorist attacks.

Under the plan, 220,000 people, among them journalists, cleaners, volunteers and players will be required to clarify their security status in a three-page-long FIFA accreditation document.

FIFA's World Cup organising committee confirmed to the DJV that reporters, in order to gain accreditation, must allow their personal details to be checked by the BKA and VS electronically.

"I criticise the fact that the World Cup organisers see journalists as a security risk and not as a partner," said Konken.

However, World Cup organising committee spokesman Jens Grittner described the checks as a normal security procedure for international tournaments.

"A football World Cup isn't like going to the cinema," said Grittner. "We have to do everything to ensure we provide the highest security possible in the stadiums."

DPA

Subject: German news

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