DISY wants to ban by law the use of hoods in demonstrations
A proposal for a law to amend the Penal Code to establish as an offense the participation in a demonstration with an intentional covering of the face, will be submitted to the Plenary Assembly on Thursday by the DISY
A proposal for a law to amend the Criminal Code so as to make it a crime to participate in a demonstration with an intentional covering of the face, will be submitted to the Plenary Assembly on Thursday by the DISY, said the MP of the party, Nikos Tornaritis.
In his statements, Mr. Tornaritis stated that they informed the Legal Committee that the DISY will tomorrow in the Plenary, submit a proposal for a law through which the participation of a person in a demonstration or assembly with the deliberate covering of the person and with the purpose of committing an offense is established as a crime. In particular, he noted, the purpose of the proposed law is to protect and safeguard the right to peaceful assembly which, as he stated, is guaranteed by article 21 of the Constitution as well as by article 12 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU as well as article 11 of European Convention on Human Rights
Mr. Tornaritis stated that the purpose of the proposed Law is to harmonize with the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights according to which, as he said, the State has the obligation to protect the smooth conduct of the demonstrations of its citizens from disruptive elements that attempt to obstruct it "and every citizen must be able to demonstrate freely without fear and not be threatened that, at any moment, he may become the victim of someone who, with his face covered, tries to commit a specific criminal offense when and if the specific legislation".
He noted that it will be tabled on Thursday in the Plenary and will be discussed by the Legal Committee with the hope, "that very soon, it will also become a Law of the Republic of Cyprus, because the few with the hoods cannot repeat episodes that shamed the Republic of Cyprus, culture but also our humanity".
The proposed law provides that a person who participates in a demonstration or assembly and with the purpose of preventing the verification of his identity, covers or deliberately alters his face in any way or by the use of any objects without reasonable cause under circumstances that create a reasonable suspicion of the commission of any offense thereof is guilty of an offense and upon conviction is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or to a fine not exceeding €4.000 or to both.
Asked whether the proposed law will also extend to stadiums, Mr. Tornaritis said that it refers to gatherings and demonstrations, noting that there is a very strict legislation on the issue of sports events.
Answering a question about the banning of the headscarf as in other countries, Mr. Tornaritis stated that the specific bill has nothing to do with the right of anyone to express their religious beliefs peacefully, as they would like.