SAccording to a statement from the Spanish National Audience, the case was reopened following a request for collaboration from the French justice system, through the issuance of a European Investigation Decision (DEI).

That request includes data from a 2021 investigation into “multiple infections [com o Pegasus] telephone numbers of journalists, lawyers, public figures and governmental and non-governmental associations, as well as members of the French government, ministers and deputies”, reads the statement.

The judge in Spain overseeing the case considers that the information provided by France may “allow the investigations to move forward” and will take further steps.

“All of this will allow joint and coordinated action by the French and Spanish judicial authorities with a view to determining the authorship of the infection carried out through the Pegasus espionage program in both France and Spain”, determined the judge, quoted in the statement released today.

The Pegasus program, developed and marketed by the Israeli company NSO, has already been used to spy on more than a thousand people in 50 countries, including activists and journalists, according to security experts and a journalistic investigation of media outlets from several countries. countries of 2021.

In France, the country’s President, Emmanuel Macron, and several ministers were spied on with Pegasus.

In Spain, the Government revealed in May 2022 that the Prime Minister, Pedro Sánchez, the Minister of Defense, Margarita Robles, the Minister of Internal Administration, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, and the Minister of Agriculture, Luis Planas, had been spied on by the same ‘software’, in an “external attack” whose perpetrator remains unknown.

Spanish justice investigated this case for almost a year, before ordering it to be closed due to Israel’s lack of cooperation.

According to today’s statement, French authorities requested information from the company NSO and directed requests for judicial cooperation to Israel and the United States.

In addition to the case involving members of the Government, there is another in Spain, still under investigation, related to Catalan separatists spied on with Pegasus.

The espionage of 18 independent Catalan politicians, with judicial authorization, was confirmed by the previous head of the Spanish secret services, Paz Esteban, dismissed from her position by the Government in 2022.

In December, the Spanish parliament approved the creation of a commission of inquiry into espionage with Pegasus, the result of agreements between socialists and independence parties to make Pedro Sánchez’s last government viable.

Read Also: Council of Europe platform calls for end to use of Pegasus ‘spyware’


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