Left-wing militants in Portugal organised a protest outside Parliament in Lisbon on July 12, during a debate on a controversial internal security bill.
GV Parliament Building
GV/SVs Demonstrators shouting slogans outside Parliament building (3 shots)
SV PULL BACK TO GV Left-wing Leader Antonio Vitorino de Almeida speaking (PORTUGUESE SOT)
SV PULL BACK TO GV Crowd applauding (3 shots)
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Background: Left-wing militants in Portugal organised a protest outside Parliament in Lisbon on July 12, during a debate on a controversial internal security bill. The bill was being discussed in a marathon debate by the country's 250 deputies. The year-old coalition government led by Socialist Prime Minister Mario Soares, says tough measures are essential to defend the state against terrorism and organised crime. But the left-wing opposition says the bill goes too far, and arouses grim memories of the legislation which marked half a century of dictatorship before the 1974 revolution by the armed forces. The new bill makes provisions for searches without warrant, preventive detention, and telephone tapping. The opposition claims this evokes practices, by the former secret police - the dreaded PIDE (International Police for the Defence of the State). Prime Minister Soares was himself detained eleven times by the PIDE, before his long years of exile in France. The government has conceded that parts of the bill were disputable, and would be toned down. Interior Minister Eduardo Pereira has told Parliament that the government was seeking full debate on the bill, so that it could be transformed into a law which all Portuguese people wanted. Just before debate on the bill began a month ago, Portugal was electrified by news of the biggest police swoop since the 1974 Revolution. In a nationwide operation, hundreds of police seized arms, explosives, and detained 42 people - among them the man who had masterminded the Revolution. Lieutenant-Colonel Otelo Saraiva de Carvalho. Otelo, as he is known, has since been held incommunicado, in a former secret police prison outside Lisbon. Justice sources say he is suspected of heading a left-wing organisation called the Popular Forces of April 25 (FP-25). Some of the other detainees have staged a hunger strike against the arrests. April 25 is the date of the Revolution which restored democracy to Portugal ten years ago.