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At APC, we remain concerned about the proposed Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill in Pakistan, which poses grave risks to freedom of expression, the right to privacy, and access to information in the country. This is why we have joined local organisations Bytes for All, Pakistan (B4A) and Media Matters for Democracy, both members of the APC network, along with Privacy International, Digital Rights Foundation, Human Rights Watch and other international organisations in signing a joint statement that urges members of the National Assembly of Pakistan to take a stand against the Bill by voting against it in its current form.
The Bill in its current form should be scrapped and the process of drafting a new bill, ensuring full compliance with international human rights standards, should begin with the inclusion of civil society, industry and public consultation at the earliest possible stage.
Read also: Expression Restricted. An Account of Online Expression in Pakistan, which forms part of the baseline research conducted by the project APC-IMPACT (India, Malaysia, Pakistan Advocacy for Change through Technology), which aims to address restrictions on the internet by promoting and protecting internet rights.
Image: Bytes for All, Pakistan.