[IRPCoalition] A message from R2K to Britain's spies at GCHQ

Marianne Franklin m.i.franklin at gold.ac.uk
Tue Jun 23 16:11:53 EEST 2015

Dear all

+1 from me, to thank Anriette for circulating this letter and alerting 
us all to this latest news.

As many organizations and networks as possible need to make their views 
of this latest breach of our human rights online/offline by those UK 
government agencies engaging in this sort of activity clear.


On 23/06/2015 11:48, Jean-Louis FULLSACK wrote:
> Thanks, Anriette,
> for this expression of "outrage" against NGO spying. I strongly 
> support this protest.
> I'd also add another opportunity for NGO's outrage that Right2Know 
> mentioned recently : the ICT Partnership between South Africa and 
> China. It includes Internet governance and cyber-security. The NGO 
> demands that the terms of the cooperation agreement are made public 
> Moreover, the NGO mentions i.a. that for the Chinese governement 
> Internet censorship is the rule and standard.
> Best regards
> Jean-Louis Fullsack
>     > Message du 23/06/15 11:03
>     > De : "Anriette Esterhuysen" <anriette at apc.org>
>     > A : irp at lists.internetrightsandprinciples.org, "Internet
>     Governance" <governance at lists.igcaucus.org>,
>     "bestbits at lists.bestbits.net" <bestbits at lists.bestbits.net>
>     > Copie à :
>     > Objet : [IRPCoalition] A message from R2K to Britain's spies at GCHQ
>     >
>     > Dear all I am sure many of you saw the news yesterday about GCHQ
>     spying on South African and Egyptian human rights organisations.
>     Here is our response (our being South African activists). Anriette
>     *A message from R2K to Britain's spies at GCHQ* Online:
>     http://www.r2k.org.za/?p=5076 We are outraged to learn that the
>     UK’s Gov­ern­ment Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Head­quar­ters (GCHQ), the
>     British spy agency, has spied on email communications of the Legal
>     Resources Centre
>     <http://lrc.org.za/press-releases/3520-press-release-lrc-emails-intercepted-by-british-intelligence>.
>     This emerged on Monday in a ruling by the UK’s secretive
>     Investigative Powers Tribunal. The ruling confirmed that another
>     human rights organisation, the Egyptian Initiative for Personal
>     Rights (EIPR), was also spied on in breach of GCHQ’s internal
>     policies. It seems there are no limits to what GCHQ and its allies
>     are willing to do. The ruling found that this surveillance was
>     illegal, even by GCHQ's own very lax standards, although this was
>     described as a "technical" breach. This is further evidence of the
>     extent to which governments across the world seem willing to use
>     surveillance policies to invade the privacy of human rights
>     defenders and ordinary citizens alike. The LRC provides pro bono
>     legal support to many civil society groups and communities across
>     South Africa, including the Right2Know Campaign. This surveillance
>     has potentially also violated the rights of the LRC’s clients to
>     attorney-client confidentiality, although no information has been
>     provided in the ruling about precisely what communications were
>     intercepted. We applaud the LRC for its continued efforts to
>     protect the rights of its clients. We call on the British Embassy
>     in Pretoria to explain how its government came to spy on South
>     African human rights lawyers! And we send a message to the GCHQ,
>     which they can plug into Google Translate in their own time:
>     *Sidikiwe! Voetsek! * For more information see the LRC's press
>     release
>     <http://lrc.org.za/press-releases/3520-press-release-lrc-emails-intercepted-by-british-intelligence>
>     and Privacy International's briefing
>     <https://www.privacyinternational.org/?q=node/601>.
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Marianne Franklin, PhD
Professor of Global Media and Politics
Convener: Global Media & Transnational Communications Program
Goldsmiths (University of London)
Department of Media & Communications
New Cross, London SE14 6NW
Tel: +44 20 7919 7072
<m.i.franklin at gold.ac.uk>
Chair of the Global Internet Governance Academic Network (GigaNet)
Steering Committee/Former Co-Chair Internet Rights & Principles Coalition (UN IGF)

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