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WORLD IN BRIEF : BRITAIN : Government Acts to Muzzle Prying Press

July 31, 1993|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

The British government made its first move toward muzzling a prying press with a proposed new privacy law, provoking the fury of populist tabloids, which complained of a threat to democracy. Reacting to widespread concern about alleged media excesses, the government said it wanted to make "infringement of privacy" an offense, outlawing intrusion into an individual's family circumstances, health or love life. "The time has come to ensure that the law protects the privacy of everyone," said Lord Mackay, who as Lord Chancellor is head of Britain's judiciary and a member of the Cabinet.

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