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Amnesty International calls on Bahrain to stop using surveillance technologies


Amnesty International called on Bahrain to stop using surveillance technologies, stressing that the devices of 3 activists were targeted in Bahrain.
Amnesty International said that a new investigation revealed the use of the notorious “Pegasus” spyware program of the Israeli “NSO” group, to target the devices of 3 activists in Bahrain. This once again demonstrates the serious threat that the Pegasus program poses to critics of “oppressive governments”, as the organization describes it.
Digital Rights Red Line, with technical support from Amnesty International and Citizen Lab, found that a lawyer, an online journalist, and a Pegasus mental health consultant were targeted between June and September 2021, noting that the three were criticizing the Bahraini authorities.
“The Bahraini authorities have continued their crackdown on dissent in recent years and have tightened their censorship of digital media, which was the only space left for open debate, after the government banned legal opposition groups,” said Lynn Maalouf, Deputy Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International.
“This appalling violation of the right to privacy comes in the context of harassment against human rights defenders, journalists, opposition leaders, and lawyers,” she noted.
The organization called on the Bahraini authorities to “immediately stop their use of surveillance technologies, and we also call on the NSO Group, and other exporters of spyware, to stop providing countries with these dangerous programs until an international regulatory framework is in place that complies with human rights obligations.”

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