AMLO government spied on activist and journalists

Tuesday 4 October, 2022
2 mins read


Three people – two journalists and a human rights defender – spied on by the Armed Forces through Pegasus software, according to a recent investigation dubbed “Spy Army”, demanded explanations from the President of México, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, on Monday about of the operation and filed a formal complaint with the Attorney General of the Republic (FGR).

“We have the requirement that we want to know tomorrow morning who authorized the espionage, to how many people they sent the information, and why the president promised that there would be no espionage and there was. That is why We join the complaint before the Prosecutor’s Office“, journalist Ricardo Raphael, one of the three people spied on, said at a press conference, according to the investigation.


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“Espía Army” collects the cases of Raymundo Ramos – defender of human rights in Tamaulipas -, Raphael himself, and a journalist from the Animal Politico media outlet, whose mobile phones were seized during the current Mexican administration.

“A complaint is being filed with the Prosecutor’s Office for the intervention of private communications without judicial authorization today,” Leopoldo Maldonado, director for México and Central America of the NGO Article 19, detailed at a press conference. None of the organizations that participated in the research together with the media Proceso, Animal Político and Aristegui Noticias, and organizations such as Toronto’s Citizen Lab.

Maldonado explained that the devices of the espionage victims were subjected to a “rigorous forensic analysis” that gives “conclusive evidence” that the phones were infected in order to access their content.

According to the investigation, a more updated version of Pegasus was used than the previous one, on which cases had already been previously reported in México.

ALSO READ AMLO rules out investigation or sanction for hacking Sedena

It brought to light some of the most contentious security issues this administration has faced.

In July 2021, an international media investigation uncovered that several countries intervened 50,000 phones with the Pegasus program, of which 15,000 cases were in México during the Government of Enrique Peña Nieto (2012-2018)the highest number.

The investigation revealed that the communications of activists and journalists were tapped; of the then opposition leader and current president, López Obrador, in addition to some of his collaborators and his cardiologist, as well as relatives of the 43 disappeared students in Ayotzinapa.

After these revelations, the president promised that espionage systems would not be hired in his government.

However, the “Spy Army” investigation reveals that there was espionage by the Mexican Armed Forces, so the report presents two possible scenarios: that the president lied to the Mexican people or that the Army makes decisions outside the decisions governmental.

“In México, the Armed Forces continue to violate human rights,” Maldonado said.

For his part, the director of Political Animal, Daniel Moreno, considered that through the journalist with the infected phone they had access to the entire newsroom: “There was access to all the information that we published, that we were going to publish and to all the sources of information” .

On the other hand, last Friday the Latinus media reported the processing of tens of thousands of emails that were since 2016 on the servers of the Ministry of National Defense (Sedena).

The documents include details about the state of health of President López Obrador, who had a heart attack in 2013 and a catheterization last January.

Furthermore, according to the news report, exhibit the power of the Army within the Government and disputes between the heads of the Secretary of National Defense (Sedena), Luis Cresencio Sandoval, and the Navy (Semar), José Rafael Ojeda.

There are also details about the so-called “Culiacanazo”, a failed operation in October 2019 that sought to arrest Ovidio Guzmán, son of “Chapo” Guzmán in Sinaloain the northwest of the country.

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Source: (EFE) from Portada, El Siglo de Torreón on 2022-10-03 17:16:37

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