The Canadian media is awash with hysteria about what it calls a potential Iranian-sponsored terror attack in Ottawa.
Unsurprisingly, the hype is rooted in baseless innuendo typical of neocon warmongers who act as loudspeakers for the Zionist regime in Tel Aviv.
The neoconservative National Post, which is for all intents and purposes an Israeli propaganda organ, published a scurrilous piece on June 16 quoting from alarmist Canadian intelligence reports which state that Iran and Hezbollah (Lebanon’s national resistance movement) may be planning to strike Ottawa.
What evidence do these intelligence analysts proffer to support their slanderous assertions about Iran and Hezbollah? Absolutely none.
The National Post admitted the documents “do not specify the exact nature of the threat Tehran may pose to the Ottawa region.”
So they claim there is a “threat” but cannot even specify what that threat is or in what form it may manifest?
“[I]n the past,” the dubious intelligence report continued, “Iran has used its proxy force, Hezbollah, to attempt attacks internationally.”
This Zionist rhetoric looks as if it could have been written by Stephen Harper’s “good friend” Benjamin Netanyahu himself.
Despite feeble Zionist disinformation, Iran has not sponsored any international terror attacks. The bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center in Argentina in 1994, which took the lives of 85 people, is still unsolved. The Zionists immediately pinned the blame for the atrocity on their Iranian and Lebanese foes, offering not one particle of proof. Argentinian researcher Adrian Salbuchi contends that the attack was a false flag operation engineered by the Israeli secret services to swing public opinion against its enemies.
When in late 2013 Argentinian President Cristina Fernandez announced that she would launch a new joint Iranian-Argentinian probe into the 1994 attack, the Zionists went berserk and their mouthpieces in Ottawa and Washington condemned the move to have a real investigation into what happened, for obvious reasons.
Canada’s intelligence services function as a political tool of the neoconservative, pro-Zionist regime in Ottawa led by the rabid Likudnik Harper. As such, their reports about Iran, Hezbollah and anything else related to the Middle East, Arabs and “terrorism” cannot be considered to be anything but propaganda and misdirection designed to serve Israel’s geopolitical agenda.
In his book “Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid,” Canadian foreign policy expert Yves Engler documented the close ties between Canada’s spy agency CSIS and Israel’s spy agency Mossad. The two spook organizations work together closely, sharing intelligence and conducting joint espionage operations targeting Arabs in Canada and abroad. Mossad has often used forged Canadian passports on covert missions (even attempted assassinations), and CSIS has looked the other way.
What may lie behind this latest dose of Iranophobic poison emanating from Ottawa? The National Post says that the Canadian intelligence documents it based its story around are from late 2013, so why promote it now?
Well, a number of events that have unfolded over the past few weeks may explain it.
On June 13 three Israeli teens were allegedly kidnapped from an illegal Jewish settlement in the West Bank. The circumstances surrounding the alleged kidnapping are murky. Strangely, nobody has taken credit for the kidnapping nor has anyone demanded a ransom. “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insists the militant Palestinian resistance group Hamas is to blame for the abduction and vowed swift action against it Monday,” reported a June 16 Globe and Mail article.
If Hamas was behind the capture of the three Israelis, surely they would have demanded a prisoner exchange as thousands of Palestinians are unjustly held as political prisoners in Israeli jails. But they have not done this, and as the Globe noted, Hamas has nothing to gain from such a reckless move at this critical juncture when they have just recently formed a unity government with the Palestinian Authority. Netanyahu called the new Hamas-PA unity government “bad for Israel.”
The only beneficiary of the kidnapping, it seems, is Israel.
Political analyst Kevin Barrett noted in a recent article on Veterans Today that this kidnapping incident may have been staged by Israel as a political stunt to undermine the new Palestinian unity government and to justify a crackdown on Hamas. “How dare the Palestinians unify against us,” the Zionist occupiers are saying to themselves.
Israel’s military chief of staff Benny Gantz has pledged a “broad operation” against Hamas. “Our aim is to find the three boys, bring them home and hurt Hamas as much as possible,” he said. Using the kidnapping incident as a pretext, Israel has arrested more than 160 Palestinians and conducted several air strikes in the Gaza Strip. Israeli officials are now lusting to re-arrest all 1,027 Palestinian prisoners who were freed in exchange for captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in 2011, reported the Globe.
“Israeli political leaders on the right,” the Globe article continued, “have demanded all sorts of punitive action be taken against Hamas [as a result of the unsolved kidnapping]: some advocate expelling the group’s leaders to Gaza; others want to annex parts of the West Bank… Minister Moshe Ya’alon hinted at a return to the practice of targeted killings – assassinations – of Hamas leaders.”
To back up his false flag hypothesis, Kevin Barrett cited a revealing June 15 Haaretz article headlined, “Mossad chief’s chillingly prescient kidnap prophecy.” In the article Israeli journalist Barak Ravid disclosed that, “Ten days ago, at a security cabinet meeting, Mossad Chief Tamir Pardo outlined a scenario spookily similar to the kidnapping of the three Israeli teens missing since Thursday night.”
The security meeting in question “dealt with the report of the Shamgar Committee on prisoner exchanges and on the Habayit Hayehudi bill that prohibits granting pardons to terrorists.”
Pardo and his colleagues tried to convince Israeli ministers not to pass the bill, arguing that it would “limit the government’s room for maneuver in future abduction cases, would keep its hands tied, and prevent it from considering other solutions for dealing with a potential crisis.”
“What will you do if in a week three 14-year-old girls will be kidnapped from one of the settlements?” Pardo asked. “Will you say there is a law, and we don’t release terrorists?”
As Haaretz inadvertently demonstrated, Zionists have quite a talent for predicting and foreshadowing future events. In 1979, the founder of Israel’s spy agencies, Isser Harel, predicted 9/11 with amazing precision, telling an Evangelical Zionist named Michael Evans over dinner that “Islamic fundamentalists” would eventually strike New York City’s “tallest building.”
Zionist neocons of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) think-tank spoke of a “New Pearl Harbour” that would facilitate their militarist foreign policy objectives exactly one year before the planes hit the twin towers in New York in 2001.
Israeli dirty tricks of this nature are nothing new. Shortly after 9/11, the Israelis were caught red-handed establishing a fake al-Qaeda cell in Gaza. Ariel ‘the butcher’ Sharon attempted to use the existence of the counterfeit “terror cell” as a pretext to bomb the beleaguered coastal enclave. “Israel ‘faked al-Qaeda presence’,” noted a Dec. 2002 BBC headline, which unveiled Israel’s deception.
A Sept. 10, 2001, Washington Times report also shed light on Israel’s penchant for ruthlessness and deception. Reporting on the content of a US Army study on the Israel-Palestine conflict, the Times article quoted the study’s authors who stated that Israel is “known to disregard international law to accomplish mission.” The US Army analysts were even more blunt in their assessment of Israel’s Mossad, characterizing the rogue agency as a “ruthless and cunning” wildcard that is “[capable of targeting] U.S. forces” and making it “look like a Palestinian/Arab act.”
Knowing Israel’s sordid history of false flags and dirty tricks, one would be foolhardy to dismiss the possibility that the “kidnapping” scandal that has unfolded over the past few days is yet another Machiavellian stage-play designed to derail Palestine’s unity government and expedite Israel’s expansionist aims.
With Syria and Iraq being overrun by bloodthirsty Western-backed mercenaries and brutes, Israel sees an opportunity to push forward with its imperialist schemes to neutralize Palestinian resistance to the occupation.
Ottawa’s ratcheting up of anti-Iranian hysteria at this conspicuous time can only be seen as a gesture of support for Tel Aviv’s campaign of terror in Gaza and the West Bank, deflecting international attention from the Israeli cuckoo in the nest.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius has once again poisoned international efforts to settle the nuclear dispute, with his latest effort to sabotage talks between Iran and the P5+1.
Negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 group – US, Britain, France Russia and China plus Germany – are due to reconvene next week in Austria with the tentative prospect of a comprehensive settlement to the long-running nuclear dispute.
A successful outcome would see Western-imposed trade sanctions on Iran being lifted. The onerous impact of these legally questionable Western sanctions on the Iranian people make that outcome long overdue.
However, this week – just days before sensitive talks re-open in Vienna – France’s top diplomat raised a new obstacle to finding a possible final agreement. Fabius is now telling French media that Iran must reduce the number of its nuclear-enrichment centrifuges, by a 10-fold factor, from a few thousand to a few hundred instruments.
Iran has already agreed to significant guarantees that its nuclear program is for peaceful civilian purposes – and not for weaponization, as the US, Britain and France have long been claiming – by agreeing to cap uranium enrichment at levels far below that required to make atomic bombs.
Fabius’ latest demand that Iran must now also drastically scale back on the number of its centrifuges used in uranium enrichment represents a new pre-condition for settling the nuclear impasse. The number of centrifuges is irrelevant given that Iran has already agreed to impose a limit on uranium enrichment – a generous concession by Iran given that it is not mandated to do so by the Non-Proliferation Treaty. That self-imposed restriction led to the interim agreement being signed between Iran and the P5+1 group of world powers last November.
That initial groundbreaking nuclear deal at the end of last year was also nearly scuppered back then by Laurent Fabius, when days before he suddenly raised the issue of “guarantees for Israeli security”. That was also seen as a mischievous intervention from Fabius, even by other Western diplomats, which in the event did not prevent the interim deal being signed on November 26.
Days before the next round of crucial talks, Fabius is up to his toxic diplomacy yet again.
Without exaggeration, no other contemporary Western diplomat has as much bad blood in his political veins than the French foreign minister.
He is currently overseeing French state-sponsored terrorism in Syria to illegally overthrow the elected government of President Bashar al Assad. Fabius is also currently overseeing the illegal French invasion of two African countries – Mali and Central Africa Republic – which has sparked the death of thousands of people from internecine violence. And yet this politician has the temerity and arrogance to hold the Iranian nation to ransom over trumped-up nuclear concerns.
But there is much more to this politician’s contaminated career. Fabius’ sinister political history has previously seen him involved in other acts of state terrorism, nuclear destruction of the environment on a massive scale, and the manslaughter of thousands of people around the world through the criminal selling of poisoned blood products.
Let’s start with the latter point first. During the 1980s when Fabius was then French prime minister, his government knowingly supplied blood transfusion products to its own citizens and those of many other countries around the world – to safeguard French commercial profits. It became known as the “blood transfusion scandal” – the biggest health controversy ever to hit France. More than 4,000 French citizens were infected by blood contaminated with HIV and Hepatitis C – of which at least 40 per cent were to die. Among several countries affected by importing blood products from France was Iran. An unknown number of sick Iranian patients would also later die from these toxic
As head of the French government between 1984-86, Fabius was subsequently charged with manslaughter relating to the scandal. He was later acquitted by a French court in 1999, along with another minister, while his former Health Minister Edmond Herve was found guilty. At least two other government officials were sent to jail for their part in the systematic crime. Angry campaigners denounced Fabius’ acquittal as an example of the French political elite being “untouchable”.
At the same time that Fabius’ government was overseeing the mass poisoning of blood patients to protect the commercial interests of French pharmaceutical companies, this same government committed one of the most audacious acts of state terrorism in recent decades.
In July 1985, French military agents carried out the bombing of a civilian ship, The Rainbow Warrior. The ship belonged to Greenpeace, the environmental campaign group, and was moored in the New Zealand port of Auckland at the time of the deadly attack, which resulted in the death of one Greenpeace activist and several others injured. French divers had mined the vessel with two explosives.
The incident brought an outpouring of international condemnation, and initially Fabius’ government denied any involvement. However, New Zealand police later arrested two French agents belonging to the foreign intelligence service, the DGSE. The pair were convicted and jailed. Fabius was then forced to come clean, in September 1985, when he made the shocking admission to world media that the French government had indeed ordered the murderous attack on a civilian vessel in a sovereign foreign territory. He famously said at the time: “The truth is cruel.”
But the background to this French act of state terrorism on the Rainbow Warrior is even more criminal. The Greenpeace ship was in New Zealand at that time to lead international protests against rampant French testing of nuclear weapons in the South Pacific. Ever since 1962, France unilaterally declared its colonial territories of Polynesia and surrounding seas to be nuclear test sites. Between 1966 and 1996, successive French governments, including that of Laurent Fabius, carried out nearly 200 test explosions on the Pacific coral reef islands of Mururoa and Fangataufa.
The nuclear explosions were carried out with air, sea and underground devices and have been responsible for radioactive pollution spreading to New Zealand, Australia and even as far away as Peru in South America. The French weapons of mass destruction have also destroyed countless natural habitats in the South Pacific.
A year before the Rainbow Warrior terror attack, the New Zealand government introduced a law designating its territorial waters a nuclear-free zone. But that legal restriction did not stop Fabius’ government from committing an act of murder against civilians – civilians who were protesting against French acts of mass extermination in the South Pacific.
This is the criminal quality of former French Prime Minister and now Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius – who has the audacity to lecture the people of Iran about their legally entitled use of peaceful nuclear technology.
Russian envoy to NATO Alexander Grushko
Russia’s envoy to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) says the western military alliance is “encouraging” the Kiev authorities to use force against pro-Moscow activists in eastern Ukraine.
Alexander Grushko made the remarks in a meeting with ambassadors of NATO member states in the Belgian capital of Brussels on Monday, Russia’s Ria Novosti news agency reported.
“NATO is providing Kiev … with technical support, thus encouraging the continuation of forceful actions,” Grushko said.
The Russian official also accused NATO of adding to tensions in the eastern Ukrainian provinces by conducting “unprecedented” activities near Russia’s borders.
He further noted that the military alliance is hampering efforts to find a peaceful solution to the current turmoil in the former Soviet state.
On May 6, NATO launched military drills in Estonia with a record-breaking number of 6,000 troops from a number of allied countries, including the US, the UK, Latvia and Lithuania. The alliance has also deployed fighter jets and naval vessels to Lithuania and Poland as well as to Romania.
Tensions between Russia and the West heightened after Ukraine’s Autonomous Republic of Crimea integrated into the Russian Federation following a referendum on March 16.
The United States and its European allies accuse Moscow of destabilizing Ukraine and have slapped a number of sanctions against Russian and pro-Russia figures.
Russia, however, rejects the accusation, saying the pro-Moscow protests in Ukraine began spontaneously against the new interim government in Kiev.
Russia’s oil giant, Lukoil, has begun pumping crude oil from one of the world’s largest undeveloped oil fields in southern Iraq, as the Arab country works to bolster its oil exports.
During a Saturday ceremony to inaugurate the West Qurna-2 field in Iraq’s southern city of Basra, Iraqi Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Luaibi said crude production at the massive oil field is expected to reach some 400,000 barrels per day (bpd), from an initial 120,000 bpd.
The Iraqi minister further expressed hope that the country’s oil output could possibly reach four million bpd by the end of this year.
“This is a historic and great accomplishment that would enable the government to implement its development programs by increasing its revenues,” added Luaibi.
Lukoil Chief Executive Vagit Alekperov also hailed the launch of West Qurna-2 as “strategically important” for the Russian company, which is the principal firm developing the enormous West Qurna-2 field.
The inauguration of West Qurna-2 will allow Russia’s second oil producer to more than double its overseas crude output.
Earlier in the day, Dhiya Jaafar, the head of Iraq’s South Oil Company, said oil exports from southern Iraq have averaged 2.48 million bpd so far this month and would rise to 2.65 million following the inauguration of West Qurna-2.
West Qurna-2, with an estimated 14 million barrels of recoverable reserves, is the second biggest untapped oil field after Rumaila in southern Iraq.
Iraq is dependent on oil exports for government revenue and is working to boost its oil sales. The Arab country has proven reserves of 143.1 billion barrels of oil as well as 3.2 trillion cubic meters of gas.
Baghdad seeks to increase its crude production capacity to nine million bpd by 2017.
Iran has rejected a politically-motivated ruling by a Canadian court to seize more than USD 7 million of the Islamic Republic’s assets and properties.
Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said on Saturday that Iran was not informed about the legal proceedings, adding that the court ruling has therefore “no legal value” to Iran.
An Ontario judge in Canada recently ordered the seizure of more than USD 7 million of assets and properties belonging to Iran over some plaintiffs alleging that the Islamic Republic funds terrorist groups.
“Given the approach of the Canadian government, it is crystal clear that the verdict is politically-motivated and such rulings have no legal value,” Afkham said, reminding the Ottawa government of its international commitment to protect diplomatic properties.
Pointing to Canada’s move to sever ties with Iran unilaterally, Afkham said under international law diplomatic properties have immunity, warning Ottawa of the legal repercussions of disrespecting international regulations.
The Iranian official stated that Iran, as a victim of terrorism, has always denounced this inhuman scourge.
She warned that the double standards used by Western countries, including Canada, in the fight against terrorism will not only fail to uproot it but will also contribute to the spread of this phenomenon.
On September 7, 2012 the Canadian government closed its embassy in Tehran and ordered Iranian diplomats to leave Canada within five days.
In a statement, Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird cited a number of reasons for Ottawa’s decision to sever ties with Iran, including the West’s dispute over Tehran’s nuclear energy program, the country’s support for the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as well as “threatening the existence of Israel.”
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) has renewed its call for the elimination of nuclear weapons across the world.
In a statement on Thursday, NAM labeled nuclear arms as a major threat and expressed deep concern over the destructive repercussions of the use of such weapons on present and future generations as well as the environment.
The statement said that using or threatening to use nuclear weapons was in contravention of international law, urging all countries to fulfill their denuclearization commitments.
It said that global nuclear disarmament is the first step toward creating a world free of nuclear weapons, stressing that the elimination of all such weapons is the only way to guarantee that they will not be used as a threat against countries.
Calling on world countries to respect international law and meet their legal commitments, NAM also urged an immediate conference attended by the leaders of world countries to discuss global disarmament.
It also urged the full implementation of a UN General Assembly resolution on nuclear disarmament, which was passed last year.
In December 2013, the UN General Assembly unanimously adopted a nuclear disarmament resolution that includes proposals forwarded by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani as the head of NAM.
The resolution, adopted on December 5, 2013, calls on nuclear-power states to make more efforts to scale down and ultimately eliminate all types of nuclear arms.
According to the resolution, non-nuclear states should be given guarantees that they will not be threatened or attacked by nuclear weapons.
It also calls on the General Assembly to urge all signatories to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to follow up on the implementation of their obligations as agreed in the 1995, 2000 and 2010 Review Conferences.
Iran says the United States has imprisoned more than 20 Iranian nationals over allegations of violating Washington’s sanctions regime against Tehran.
“The US government has arrested more than 20 Iranian nationals over the unfounded allegation of breaching US’s unilateral and illegal sanctions against the Iranian nation and [it] has so far taken no measure to release these innocent citizens despite [Iran’s] follow-up through diplomatic and legal channels,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said on Sunday.
She added that Iran’s Foreign Ministry would continue to pursue and seek to secure the rights and freedom of these innocent Iranians.
She further dismissed claims about the detention of American nationals in Iran.
“No American national is in custody or prison in the Islamic Republic of Iran,” the Iranian spokesperson said.
She said the two people that the US authorities and media say are in custody in Iran are actually Iranian citizens and will have to be held accountable before the law while enjoying their full legal rights.
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Two New York legislators say they will introduce a bill to strip state aid from universities that take part in a recent movement to boycott Israeli academic centers.
State Sen. Jeff Klein, a Bronx Democrat, and Assemblyman Dov Hikind, a Brooklyn Democrat who is also a former member of the Jewish Defense League that was classified as a “terrorist group” by the FBI in 2001, say they want to cut off state aid to universities affiliated with the American Studies Association’s movement to boycott Israeli institutions.
Earlier this month, members of the ASA overwhelmingly voted to ban Israeli universities from collaborations with their campuses.
The organization said the reason behind its decision was that the Israeli institutions were “a party” to policies “that violate human rights” as Israel’s “violation of international law and UN resolutions” continues and the “impact of the Israeli occupation on Palestinian scholars and students” is well-documented.
“The American Studies Association is carrying on a long and proud tradition of American academics by engaging in an academic boycott much like many professors did during apartheid South Africa,” Michael Shallcross, a member of Students for Justice in Palestine at Temple University in Philadelphia, told Press TV.
However, the move, which is part of a larger international effort to win boycotts of Israeli institutions, angered some US politicians both at state and federal level.
Rep. Eliot Engel (D-New York) has urged the ASA to end the boycott, saying he was surprised by the organization’s decision.
And now, two pro-Israel Democrats in New York’s state legislature, Klein and Hikind, are trying to cut state aid to universities affiliated with the movement.
“[It] is a shameless attempt at censorship by powerful Zionist politicians in New York State by cutting off economic life lines that make higher education possible,” Shallcross said.
The ASA is the largest and oldest association involved in interdisciplinary studies of American culture and history.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors have neither the right nor any duty to inspect Iran’s military and missile sites, a senior Iranian official says.
“The agency’s inspectors have no right and [no] responsibility to do it. There is no authority in the world [responsible] for inspecting such facilities, and there is no treaty in that regard, either,” Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi said on Saturday.
“The IAEA is not in a position to conduct such inspections,” he underscored, dismissing certain media reports which quoted him as saying that the agency’s inspectors will visit Iran’s missile industries for more transparency.
In November, Iran and the IAEA agreed on a road map based on which Iran would, on a voluntary basis, allow IAEA inspectors to visit the Arak heavy water plant and the Gachin uranium mine in Bandar Abbas, in southern Iran, despite the fact that Tehran is under no such obligation to do so under the Safeguards Agreement.
The voluntary move is a goodwill gesture on the part of Iran to clear up ambiguities over the peaceful nature of its nuclear energy program.
Salehi further denied charges leveled by certain Western countries suggesting a diversion in Iran’s civilian atomic work.
“Such accusations are unfounded given the IAEA’s inspections and [Iran’s] broad transparency moves and cooperation,” the AEOI head said.
The United States, Israel, and some of their allies have repeatedly accused Iran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear energy program.
Iran rejects the allegations, arguing that as a committed signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the IAEA, it has the right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
The IAEA has conducted numerous inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities, but has never found any evidence showing that Iran’s civilian nuclear energy program has been diverted to nuclear weapons production.
Egypt’s constitution-drafting committee has agreed to an article that grants immunity to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF).
According to a draft published in Egypt’s state media on Thursday, the new constitution would grant more powers to the SCAF and could ban Islamic parties completely.
The 50-member assembly is scheduled to finish the draft of the constitution this week. The constitution will then be put to a referendum in December.
Earlier this month, it was revealed that General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the army chief and minister of defense, had been seeking immunity for the military council for a period of five to ten years.
It has also been leaked that he asked for a media campaign to lobby for a specific clause to be included in the constitution. The clause would allow Sisi to retain his post as defense minister in the event he loses in the presidential election.
The military representatives of the committee also called for the constitution to allow the military to name the defense minister during the next two presidential terms. The move has been widely criticized by legal experts, who say this would give the military more power than the president.
Egypt has been experiencing unrelenting violence since July 3, when the army ousted President Mohamed Morsi’s government, suspended the constitution, and dissolved the parliament. It also appointed the head of the Supreme Constitutional Court, Adly Mahmoud Mansour, as the new interim president.
The government of Mansour has launched a bloody crackdown on Morsi supporters and arrested more than 2,000 Muslim Brotherhood members, including the party’s leader, Mohamed Badie, who was detained on August 20.
About 1,000 people were killed in a week of violence between Morsi supporters and security forces after police dispersed their protest camps in a deadly operation on August 14. The massacre sparked international condemnation and prompted world bodies to call for an independent investigation into the violence.
The Spanish government has approved a new draft law which imposes harsh penalties on Spaniards taking part in unauthorized anti-government demonstrations, a move criticized by the opposition as trying to silence protests.
The draft law, presented by Interior Minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz on Friday, sets fines of up to 30,000 euros ($40,800) for offenses like torching the national flag, affronting the state or causing serious troubles outside parliament.
Fines of up to 1,000 euros will be imposed on people insulting or intimidating police officers.
Four “very serious” offenses, including interfering in electoral processes and illegal protests at strategic facilities such as airports or nuclear power plants, could be fined up to 600,000 euros (about $1,000,000).
The opposition says the bill is meant to prevent demonstrations against the government as the country struggles with a debt crisis and high unemployment.
“When more than 20 percent of people are unemployed, I don’t think this legislation is what we require,” said Alejandro Tourino, from law firm Ecija.
The government, however, has defended the bill, saying it will create discipline and safeguard public freedoms.
It will help “regulate and protect public freedoms,” said Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria.
Madrid’s harsh spending cuts and rising unemployment have sparked massive anti-government protests across the country in recent years. Protesters argue that the government-imposed measures have failed to curb rising poverty or help extricate the country from its worst recession in years.
The draft law must be approved by parliament, where it may change to some extent. However, it will probably be ratified as the governing party has an absolute majority in the parliament.
Spain has seen numerous protests in recent years. On November 20, students gathered in front of the Education Ministry in Madrid to show their anger at the government’s austerity cuts, rising fees and other changes to the education system.
The Spanish government has been sharply criticized over the austerity measures that are hitting the middle and working classes the hardest.
Battered by the global financial downturn, the Spanish economy collapsed into recession in the second half of 2008, taking with it millions of jobs.