Moroccan journalist included in the Pegasus-hit said no one checked his phone

Editor in chief of one of Morocco’s top news websites, Ahmed Najim, said that he was astonished when he saw his name revealed by Forbidden Stories, a consortium of 17 newspapers that released stories claiming that the Moroccan government was among those that used a potent Israeli spy software, Pegasus, to spy on journalists.

Najim said neither Amnesty which conducts checks of infected websites with the malware nor the other news portals that published his name contacted him to check his phone or seek comments.

He wondered how could Amnesty and the other media that relayed the allegations state that his phone was infected.

The Moroccan government rejected the spy allegations as unfounded, recalling that Amnesty has accused Morocco last year but failed to offer hard evidence of its claims.

The constitution protects personal communications and law enforcement agencies act within what the law permits, the government said in a statement.

The statement also pointed out that the Moroccan government has never acquired computer spyware to infiltrate communication devices, nor have the Moroccan authorities ever resorted to such acts, adding that the media coalition, in all the news articles it has disseminated, has so far been unable to provide evidence to support its claims.

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