Germany agrees law blocking child porn sites
Germany's cabinet has agreed a draft law to block access to child-porn websites, Economy Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg said Wednesday.
The government signed agreements last Friday with the country's main Internet service providers (ISPs)-- representing 75 percent of the German market -- to block around 1,500 sites per day with illegal images of children.
Internet users hoping to download child porn will instead be met with a large red "stop" sign, warning of the impact of paedophilia on the victims. They will not have their personal details or IP addressed recorded.
The draft legislation is an "important signal" but not a "silver bullet" in the fight against child pornography, zu Guttenberg said.
Family affairs minister Ursula von der Leyen said that two other ISPs had signalled their intention to block access to child-porn sites, covering 94 percent of web surfers.
"This means that there will be no delay in putting the measures in place after the legislation is adopted and the service providers should start preparing from now onwards," she told reporters.
Other countries including Britain, Canada, New Zealand, Norway, South Korea and Sweden have already introduced similar schemes successfully, Berlin said.
Last Thursday, German police said they had smashed an international child porn ring in 92 countries.
Pornographic images of children were transmitted from more than 1,000 connections in Germany to 8,000 IP addresses in countries including Austria, Canada, New Zealand, Switzerland and the United States.
The footage included "images of the most serious sexual abuse, even of toddlers," police in the southwestern state of Baden-Wuerttemberg said.