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Volume 471: debated on Tuesday 29 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether she expects to implement the additional protocol to the Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime on the criminalisation of acts of a racist and xenophobic nature committed through computer systems. (174425)

The Government believe that our current law effectively deals with incitement to racial hatred, and strikes the right balance between the need to protect individuals from violence and hatred and the need to protect freedom of expression. We will therefore not ratify the protocol as it does not allow us to maintain our criminal threshold for this sort of offence.