In Brief: Top German court rules nation’s intelligence service must curtail surveillance on foreigners abroad

The update to the wiretapping law that took effect in 2017 had boosted the agency’s ability to collect information about foreigners abroad without having to provide a legal justification.

Photo by Daria Shevtsova from Pexels

The Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe has ruled against a law that allows Germany’s intelligence service to spy on journalists outside of the country.

The update to the wiretapping law that took effect in 2017 had boosted the agency’s ability to collect information about foreigners abroad without having to provide a legal justification.

Reporters without Borders, a human rights lawyer and several foreign journalists filed suit, expressing concern that the German secret service would pass on sensitive information that could harm journalists or their sources.

The justices agreed and ruled the law must be amended by the end of next year at the latest. They said the current version violates both Germany’s telecommunications privacy regulations and its protections of press freedom.

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Pools in Berlin can begin reopening on Monday, May 25, but with some caveats imposed by the city government.

Changing rooms and showers will remain closed and entry tickets — which will cost 3.80 euros for now — will cover only a limited time frame.

The number of visitors allowed into the facilities will be strictly regulated and swimmers will have to practice social distancing in the pool.

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