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Pirates support Ukraine resolution, warn against censorship

European Parliament Freedom, democracy and transparency Press releases

The European Parliament today adopts a resolution strongly condemning the Russian invasion of Ukraine and calling for further sanctions against Vladimir Putin’s regime. This resolution also calls on the EU Commission to provide extensive support to all citizens of Ukraine who are currently seeking refuge. Pirate Party Members of the European Parliament support this position, but also warn of the negative effects of digital censorship for Europe.

MEP Patrick Breyer, German Pirate and Member of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE), comments:

“We must put a stop to Putin’s war of aggression. However, we Pirates think it is counterproductive to try to censor Russian state-funded media and alleged propaganda accounts online. As we know from experience, European censorship will give Putin an excuse to cut off his own citizens from important information provided by European public broadcasters in turn. Also, asking technology companies to block alleged propaganda content online sets a dangerous precedent for the future. Big Tech cannot be trusted to decide on our behalf which information is propaganda lies and which is credible. There can be good reasons to read and monitor lies. Empowering citizens to take their own informed decisions is the right approach to desinformation, not censorship.”

MEP Markéta Gregorová, Czech Pirate and Member of the Special Committee on Foreign Interference in all Democratic Processes (INGE), comments:

“The European Parliament’s resolution comes after a weekend of the toughest sanctions, measures and actions ever brought by the European Union as a whole. As the European Parliament, we therefore primarily support the steps already taken and reaffirm the unity of the EU. However, our role is also to look over the horizon, and we focus on a number of other issues, such as Ukrainian migrants, their safety and asylum, intelligence sharing and the fight against disinformation. We express our appreciation and support for all the Russian and Belarusian citizens who have gone out in recent days to protest against the war at the expense of their own security. And we guarantee that the EU and its Member States will ensure that the perpetrators of war crimes, including Vladimir Putin and Alexander Lukashenko, are brought to justice.

In a joint statement by European Pirates and Pirate Parties International, the global Pirate movement last week condemned the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine and called on the international community to adopt strong measures and positions in regard to this conflict. Further, the Pirate Party of Russia called on the people of Russia and Belarus to speak up against Putin’s regime.