The Christian Social Union (CSU), a leading Christian democratic and conservative political party in Bavaria, Germany is due to issue a paper detailing effective ways to combat terrorism that will include financial restraints, as the party sees it. The paper will also include regulation for all virtual currencies including Bitcoin.
As reported by German publication Die Welt, The paper is titled “Fighting Terrorism Effectively” and will be issued at a closed-doors CSU party meeting on Wednesday, January 6th.
A major German political party in Bavaria, the Christian Social Union, will officially pass its paper on fighting terrorism at a party meeting this week. The paper calls for wide-reaching measures that encompasses calls for stricter social media controls as well as increased financial regulations and tracking oversight.
While the CSU operates in Bavaria, its larger sister party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) operates in all the other remaining states in Germany. The CSU is also represented at a federal level in a lower house of German parliament, the Bundestag.
The paper cites the abusing of the freedom and rights to one’s expression wherein Islamist violence as well as violence against refugees (Syrian refugees who are granted refugee status in Germany,) are seen to be glorified on Twitter and Facebook. Noting that extremists’ posts inciting and calling for violence are only taken down after they are reported, the Party’s paper calls for pre-installed algorithms and filters implemented by Facebook which deletes such extremist posts. The paper also calls for the user of such posts to be blocked completely, under certain circumstances as a result of the revised guidelines proposed.
The Party also seeks that network operators (possibly ISPs, citation needed) work with the police, to ensure that extremist content is reported to the authorities immediately, as and when necessary.
In mentioning those returning/arriving from Syria, the Party suggests that “those who fought abroad for a terrorist militia with another nationality” and now “possesses German citizenship” shall have his/her German citizenship revoked.
The motive to look to impose financial controls according to the party is to curb the finances pooled to fund terrorism. The Party cites illegal oil sale, trade of antique objects around the world as well as donations funneled in from around the world as primary sources of funding for the self-titled extremist group, Islamic State.
Taking a direct approach to ‘dry up’ terrorists’ financial sources, the CSU calls for the end of anonymity with prepaid cards. Furthermore, the Party also called for the identification of senders and recipients of all transactions over 50 euros.
The paper also demands an internationally accepted legal framework governing virtual currencies, highlighting Bitcoin in particular. The Party states that currencies such as Bitcoin to have no entity or authority controlling it while adding: “ Bitcoin can thus not only be transferred without a trace, but can also be exchanged for Euros or Dollars.”
In the aftermath of the Paris Attacks — an incident that drummed up the alleged usage of bitcoin among terrorists with no real evidence to show for the claim – there were calls for regulation of virtual currencies. Interior and justice ministers from the European Union even organized a crisis meeting to plan an effective crackdown of anonymous modes of payment and virtual currencies.
However, no measures or controls on anonymous cards or virtual currencies have been imposed or exercised since.
Featured image of Munich, Bavaria from Shutterstock.