Argentina: 400 international journalists illegaly spied by Macri's government

The Argentine Justice revealed an espionage structure which worked within the Federal Intelligence Agency, but outside this entity's law. During the G20 Summit, in December 2018, the organization tracked correspondents from EFE, ANSA, DPA, Xinhua, Reuters, AP and major international outlets.

Juan Mabromata / AFP

The Federal Court Nº11 of Buenos Aires investigates an illegal espionage structure that was organized during the administration of former President Mauricio Macri, operated within the Federal Intelligence Agency (AFI) of Argentina, contacted drug traffickers as "agents" and reported directly to the president's office.

The former president, his former minister of security and current political reference, Patricia Bullrich, the then AFI directors, Gustavo Arribas and Silvia Majdalani and several "agents" are being investigated by judge Marcelo Martínez De Georgi for "illegal intelligence production" .

The complaint was filed by current AFI controller, Cristina Caamano, after the new AFI authorities audit the agency and found that the digital files of the espionage had not been properly erased before the current government started its management on December 10th, 2019.

The scandal, unprecedented for the young Argentine democracy recovered in 1983, does not only includes VP Cristina Fernández de Kirchner as a victim but also the Buenos Aires City mayor, Horacio Rodríguez Larreta and who was Buenos Aires Province governor until 2019, María Eugenia Vidal, both partners of Macri during the general elections in October.

In addition, the judicial investigation exposed how during the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires in December 2018, this network of political and social espiojane spied on more than 400 journalists, among whom are the correspondents of  EFE, ANSA, DPA, Xinhua, Associated Press and Reuters.

The organization also tracked journalists from international outlets such as Bloomberg, The Bubble, CNN, Argentinisches Tagblatt, Al Jazeera, Getty Images, ARD, The BA Times and Forbes.

As for the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), we condemn this undemocratic action and violation of the privacy of hundreds of journalists and their families. The IFJ demands the new Argentine authorities fully support the judicial investigation and demands exemplary sentences for those who allowed and encouraged this organization to operate outside the rule of law.

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