The European Parliament is scheduled to hold a critical vote on the ACTA anti-piracy treaty -- a pact that has sparked street protests and a petition drive from people in Europe who fear it would limit internet freedom.
A "no" vote in the Parliament on Wednesday would kill the treaty as far as the European Union is concerned.
Supporters say that ACTA -- the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement -- is needed to harmonize international standards to protect the rights of those who produce music, movies, pharmaceuticals, fashion goods and other products that often fall victim to piracy and intellectual property theft. Opponents say it would stifle free access to information.
EU efforts to ratify the treaty, which needs approval by all 27 member nations, are already in deep trouble.