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2004-12-20 Munich Mayor Asks Agriculture Minister to Take Software Patents Off the Agenda

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The mayor of the city of Munich, Christian Ude says in a press statement that he has called on the federal minister of agriculture, Renate Künast, to have the software patents directive taken off the agenda in tomorrow's meeting of the EU Agriculture & Fishery Council. Ude says he "can see no justification for this hasted proceding of the EU Council" and expected that this controversial proposal be rediscussed and revoted.

Report from Muenchen.de

The newswire "Rathaus-Umschau" of 2004-12-20 reports (in translation by phm):

EU Software Patent Directive: Agreement in Danger?

2004-12-20

The Council of Ministers of the EU will presumably decide on the controversially-discussed Common Position of the Directive "On the Patentability of Computer-Implemented Inventions" in the Agriculture and Fishery Council without further discussion.

In connection with the Linux Projectof Munich City "LiMux" there had been insecurities about the possible patent-law-related implications of the planned use of Linux on the city's office computers. In november the Federal Parliament (Bundestag) had taken up Munich's demand for clarity and legal security in an inter-group motion, expressed concerns about the Council's draft and asked for amendments.

Although meanwhile a new discussion about the directive in the EU Council had been taken into consideration, now the Dutch Council Presidency is pressing for a decision before Christmas.

This unnecessary hardening of the Council Presidency's methods has provoked a broad opposition which has been calling on the German representative in the agriculture and fishery council, federal minister Renate Künast, to demand that either there is a new vote with discussion, or the item is transferred into the next yeat.

Mayor Christian Ude says: "I can see no justification for this hasted proceding of the EU Council. After the multitude of concerns raised by all sides of politics, of small and medium enterprises and of many developpers of free software, a further discussion about the directive proposal and not a nodding-off in the non-expert Council of Agriculture and Fisheries had been expected. I have today approached minister Künast to inform her of these expectations.

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