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Denmark: Terror case against the association "Oproer" (Rebellion)
01 October 2006
The Danish Minister of Justice, Ms. Lene Espersen, decided on Wednesday 11 October to follow the advice from the national prosecutor (Rigsadvokaten), Mr. Henning Fode, and open a case against the private association "Oproer" for having breached the Danish anti-terror laws.
According to a press release from the office of the Rigsadvokaten the case is against the spokesman, Mr. Patrick Mac Manus, for having:
"collected and supplied economical support to groups, which commit or are having the intention of committing terror acts, and for having attempted to collect funds with the intention of providing economical support for such groups".
The police started an investigation in 2004 because "Oproer" in a public statement declared that the association wanted to challenge the Danish terror laws through collecting money for the Peoples Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and the Colombian guerrilla organisation FARC. The association have publicly declared that they have supplied both organisations with 50.000 Danish Kroner (around 6.500 Euro) each.
According to the press statement from the Rigsadvokaten "both organisations have either taken responsibility for or are ascribed to actions which must be regarded as covered by the Penal Code (§114) on terrorism."
It has further more added to the ministers decision to raise the case against "Oproer" that the association, which have around 700 member according to there own website, in the spring of 2005 published an international appeal on the site. In this appeal organisations from all over Europe were encouraged to challenge the terror laws by collecting money for PFLP and FARC. This lead the police to stop the web site of the association in August a year ago. But only with the result that within a few days a number of other web sites in Denmark and Europe published the appeal. Later the police have pursued the initiative and have had the appeal removed from a number of web sites.
The only web site, which carries the appeal, is the Parliaments own site. In a written question during last year's session from an MP, Ms. Line Barfod from The Red-Green Alliance (Enhedslisten), quoted the appeal in full text when asking the Prime Minister, Mr. Anders Fogh Rasmussen, about his views on the case. And since all official questions are published on the Parliaments web site the appeal can be read there in full length.
In October last year the court confirmed that the police were right in closing the website, a decision which then lead "Oproer" to appeal the High Court where their case is pending.
"Oproers" spokesman, Patrick Mac Manus, have explained the purpose of the appeal as a way to create debate about the extent of the terror laws in Denmark: - The European terror list excludes resistance and liberation movements from international society whereby a political and social solution to a long line of conflicts around the world are being curbed. The terror list is a political and not a legal document and cannot form the basis of court praxis, he told Danish Radio when the "Oproers" appeal case was announced earlier this year.