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State ditches net censorship plan

GAMBLERS need no longer fear that their internet service provider will block access to their favourite gaming sites after the Finance Ministry withdrew a proposal to restrict the usage of foreign websites offering gambling, the Sme daily reported.

GAMBLERS need no longer fear that their internet service provider will block access to their favourite gaming sites after the Finance Ministry withdrew a proposal to restrict the usage of foreign websites offering gambling, the Sme daily reported.

The ministry abandoned its plans to regulate online gambling sites after it received comments from the European Union.

“Concerning the diversity of opinions within the European Union, as well as a wide extension of critical statements, we propose to halt the legislative process,” said ministry spokesperson Martin Jaroš, as quoted by Sme.

Both the ministry and the European Commission declined to provide any further details about the decision. According to the internet site PokerLive.cz, it is possible that one of the states which criticised the Slovak legislative proposal was Malta, which is where a majority of gambling websites are based, Sme wrote on November 8.

The ministry also accepted the objections of Slovak Justice Minister Lucia Žitňanská who pointed out that having the state maintain a blacklist of websites, in this case controlled via its nominees in the Tax Directorate and overseeing gambling sites, would look a lot like censorship.


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