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June 18, 2021

EU Court of Justice to rule on ACTA legality

The European Commission (EC) will refer the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) to the Court of Justice of the European Union, the highest court of the EU, to check if the agreement breaches fundamental rights and freedoms, realitatea.net informs, quoting AFP. EU Trade Commissar Karel De Gucht said the court will be asked to clarify whether the treaty complied with “the EU’s fundamental rights and freedoms”. The Court will have in view a balance between fundamental rights: the right of speech, access to information and intellectual property right.Several European countries challenged the agreement and have backed away from it until the situation is clarified. Negotiated between the UE, USA, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, South Korea, Morocco, Mexico and Switzerland, ACTA is supposed to combat counterfeiting in a broad sense, ranging from drugs and car parts to internet piracy. The agreement has been lately the target of massive street protests in a number of European states and in other parts of the world over its provisions on internet piracy. ACTA detractors claim the vague phrasing it contains may lead to the restriction of rights and freedoms such as the freedom of speech, the right to privacy or the free movement of ideas.

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