Personal Democracy Plus Our premium content network. LEARN MORE You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

Slovenian ambassador apologizes for signing ACTA, Poland halts ratification

BY Antonella Napolitano | Friday, February 3 2012

Helena Drnovsek Zorko, Slovenia's ambassador to Japan, is one of the EU representatives that signed ACTA a week ago.

Yesterday, though, the ambassador reconsidered her position and issued an apology to her country for signing the international treaty on counterfeiting. She wrote:

I want to apologise because I carried out my official duty, but not my civic duty. I don’t know how many options I had with regard to not signing, but I could have tried. I did not. I missed an opportunity to fight for the right of conscientious objection on the part of us bureaucrats.

Apparently she was flooded by emails and messaged from Slovenian citizens that criticized the treaty's ratification. On her personal blog, she then acknowledged that online protests raised concerns about a treaty that she now defines as “damaging to the state and citizens."

The ambassador also warned against demonization by the people who protested against her, pointing out that the responsibility is on her government:

This was decided by the Slovenian government and by the parliamentary committee for EU matters, and before that, Slovenia was for quite some time involved in coordinating the agreement. All this was done with too little transparency, judging by the outraged responses that have appeared following the signing. Back then, the Slovenian media did not demonise this decision to the same extent as they now demonise my signature. This I consider very dangerous for the continuous (non-)development of democracy in Slovenia. 

Tomorrow a protest is planned in Ljubljana, Slovenia’s capital, and the ambassador  called for people’s participation: “The true concern and determination of those Slovenian citizens who feel that the agreement must be stopped will be reflected in the number of people who attend this protest. I would like to ask for somebody to please attend in my name.” she concluded.

But the Slovenian ambassador is not the only political representative to have second thoughts. The Washington Post writes in fact that Poland’s prime minister Donald Tusk declared that he is halting the the ratification process on ACTA, a treaty that also Poland had signed a week ago.

Poland was the country that faced the biggest amount of protest against ACTA: last Thursday more than 10,000 people took the streets in protest, BBC reported.

Poland government websites were also attacked by Anonymous. ‘Anonymous’ masks were also worn by some Polish MPs in the Parliament.

News Briefs

RSS Feed friday >

First POST: Net Effects

Ballooning digital campaign teams; early registration deadlines kept millions of people from voting in 2012; love letters to Obamacare; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Data-Driven

Get to know Clinton's digital team even better; Ted Cruz election announcement-related fundraising offers peak into the coming data-driven campaign arms race; New York City launches online community engagement pilot program called IdeaScale; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Too Much Information

Will Facebook become the Walmart of News?; Hillary Clinton's digital team; how easy it is to get your hands on 4.6 million license plate scans; and much, much more. GO

tuesday >

First POST: Firsts

Political reporters use Yik Yak to pep up stories about Ted Cruz's campaign announcement; The New York Times, Buzzfeed and National Geographic may agree to let Facebook host their news on its servers; Google fiber users to soon get targeted television ads; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: Cowed

TedCruz.com for president; Meerkat fever; who does Facebook work for (probably not you); Medium, "the billionaire's typewriter"; and much, much more. GO

More