EFA MEPs spied with Pegasus
Greens/EFA members Diana Riba i Giner and Jordi Solé were spied on by the NSO Group’s surveillance spyware technology.
The interdisciplinary laboratory of the University of Toronto, Citizen Lab, revealed that at least 65 Catalan pro-independence politicians, lawyers, and journalists were victims of cyber espionage using Pegasus and Candiru spyware. The surveillance also affected their staff, families and relatives.
This publication evidence software like Pegasus can only be purchased by Member states, and it suggested a connection between this espionage and Spanish authorities.
From EFA, we denounce the use of these tools for political gain, this violation of Human and Civil Rights, and a very alarming attack to democracy.
To properly investigate these matters, Inquiry Committee on Pegasus was established. EFA MEP Diana Riba i Giner has been selected as Vice-chair of this new Committee. The Committee will look into combating the abusive use of Pegasus and similar surveillance tools, amongst other things.
Diana Riba, EFA MEP and Second Vice-Chair of the Pegasus Committee, said:
“In our particular case, spying on us is spying on an entire Parliament, on our communications with the other Members. It is a crime against 450 million Europeans which affects the democratic normality of this institution and it is something which cannot go unpunished either from a legal or a political point of view.”
“This software can only be acquired by states. We have too many indications as to who is responsible for this espionage. We therefore demand clarification and accountability from the Spanish State. “
“As a member of the Committee, I assure you that I will work tirelessly to get to the bottom of this matter, to hold those responsible to account and to promote the necessary legislative changes to prevent such an act, which puts democracy and the rule of law at serious risk, from happening again in Europe.”
Jordi Solé, EFA President and First Vice-President of the Greens/EFA Group, comments:
"Spying on political competitors is absolutely unacceptable. The revelations shed a harsh light on the unscrupulous use of surveillance technology in violation of fundamental rights. We Greens/EFA will work to ensure that the European Parliament fully investigates this attack on fundamental rights."