First modification: 07/04/2021 – 01:08
The Government of Spain could soon approve the reform of the National Security Law, which they hope will serve to respond to future emergencies, based on the lessons learned from the Covid-19 pandemic. The measures include the possibility of mobilizing any citizen of legal age, temporary access to public and private goods and the obligation of the media to collaborate with the authorities.
The arrival of the coronavirus pandemic revealed the global inability to articulate an early response to the emergency that ensued. Countries like Spain noted the shortage of medical supplies, as well as masks for their citizens.
The machinery of the State began to work, in what the authorities described as “times of war”. On March 14, 2020, when Pedro Sánchez, president of the Spanish Government, decreed the State of Alarm before the outbreak of the coronavirus, this is how he pronounced himself in his popular speech, seen by 17 million Spaniards: “We will mobilize all the resources of the state, economic, health, civil and military for the protection of all citizens “.
With the preliminary draft of a reform of the National Security Law, revealed by the newspaper ‘El País’, the Government also hopes to be able to mobilize even its citizens and companies. The Council of Ministers would have made a first reading of the bill on June 22 and it could soon be approved and sent to Congress.
The text is based on article 30 of the Constitution, specifically section number 4, which establishes that “by law, the duties of citizens may be regulated in cases of serious risk, catastrophe or public calamity.” However, it remains to be seen how it is legally resolved that it is an ordinary and not organic law. The latter are the only ones that can affect fundamental rights.
Every Spanish adult could be mobilized in case of crisis
As published by ‘El País’, the new text contemplates that any person of legal age can be mobilized so that they can carry out their “personal benefits”, when there is a “situation of interest for national security.”
In addition, if it goes ahead, it would be established that while the emergency lasts, the State can have temporary access to assets as well as suspend all kinds of activities. Those affected could receive compensation, except when a citizen is mobilized to offer a personal benefit.
The new law would also affect the media, which would be obliged to disseminate preventive or operational information, which is considered by the authorities.
It also tries to protect the national industrial muscle. One of the main objectives is that moments of product shortages are not repeated, as happened in March 2020, when the pandemic was unleashed with virulence in Spain.
International speculation was added to the shortage, with which the producing countries put restrictions on exports. The new law hopes that emergency supplies can be provided, starting from self-sufficiency.
In this sense, it will seek to complete the Strategic Reserve Based on National Industrial Production Capacities (Recapi), which was approved in October 2020. A mechanism to ensure the production of strategic material such as electronic components, communication technology or sanitary equipment .
Finally, it is expected that the National Security Council will prepare a catalog of human and material resources, public and private property, with which it can be possible to have proof of the capacities available to the State.
For the opposition, it is the return to “compulsory military service”
The National Security Council is a body that was created in 2013 with the unanimous support of all political forces. It is the highest body in matters of national security and is a Government Delegate Commission, which meets at the initiative of the President, and which in extreme cases could also be chaired by the King.
In 2015, during the Government of the Conservatives of the Popular Party, the first National Security Law was made, which established the functions of the National Security Council.
After the pandemic, the new center-left Executive formed by the Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE) and United We Can have decided to update the rule with the experience acquired in the fight against the coronavirus.
A new law that the opposition does not like. Pablo Casado, leader of the popular, despite the conservativeness of the rule, has rejected it: “They present a military law, but there is still no pandemic law.”
Sánchez wants to put a mandatory “military service” for Spaniards with the National Security Law.
But there is still no pandemic law, tourists do not know what to expect and we do not know what happens with the new outbreaks.
His quirky schedule and ineffectiveness know no bounds. pic.twitter.com/cU8cn21GTU
– Pablo Casado Blanco (@pablocasado_) July 3, 2021
The use to draft the law of article 30 of the Constitution, where the repealed compulsory military service was included, in section 2, has been used by the conservative to criticize the measure, describing it as restrictive to freedoms.
France 24 with local media