Snowden pede a demissão do chefe de polícia de Montréal

Depois de ter sido revelado que as forças policiais da província do Québec, no Canadá, espiaram secretamente os telefones de (pelo menos) sete jornalistas, Edward Snowden pediu a demissão do chefe de polícia de Montréal.

Tudo começou quando se descobriu que durante cinco meses a polícia vigiou o telemóvel do jornalista Patrick Lagacé, do La Presse, para obter informação sobre as suas chamadas, sms e localização. Tudo parte de uma “investigação policial interna” para identificar as fontes do jornalista, após este ter andado a investigar comportamentos abusivos por parte da polícia, o que lhes causou algum mau estar.

Logo após estas revelações, as autoridades admitiram que, em 2013, obtiveram mandados para espiar outros seis jornalistas também envolvidos em revelações relacionadas com as forças de segurança.

Montreal police have defended their actions, claiming that it was an exceptional situation. The surveillance was part of an investigation into allegations that police officers in the drugs and street gangs unit had fabricated evidence. Five officers were arrested over the allegations this summer.

After police detected contact between one of the officers under investigation and La Presse journalist Patrick Lagacé, they obtained warrants to track Lagacé’s iPhone. Police actions were aimed at investigating police officers, not Lagacé, Montreal police chief Philippe Pichet said on Monday.

“We are very aware of the importance of freedom of the press,” said Pichet. “But on the other hand, there were criminal allegations against a police officer … and we have a job to do.”

Esta frase não devia existir: “Estamos cientes da importância da Liberdade de Imprensa, mas…”

A polícia que faça o trabalho dela e deixe os jornalistas fazer o deles.

O sr. Snowden é que não ficou contente com esta excepção à Liberdade de Imprensa e, numa palestra dada por vídeo-conferência para a Universidade McGill, pediu a demissão do chefe de polícia Pichet.

Echoing a call by some Montreal city councillors, Snowden suggested the police chief should resign. “Rather than the police chief saying ‘all right this was clearly something that went too far and regardless of whether or not I authorised this operation, I recognise that to restore trust I need to re-establish the basis of accountability … for that reason I have chosen to resign.’ We don’t see the mayor calling for that, we don’t see the local premier calling for that.”

The story, said Snowden, fits a broader narrative of governments masking their own actions as they peer into the lives of private citizens. “This inverts the traditional dynamic of private citizen and public officials into this brave new world we’re facing of private officials and public citizens,” he said.

Podem assistir à palestra completa do Snowden no vídeo abaixo.

 

Edward Snowden calls Canada police spying a ‘radical attack’ on journalists [Ashifa Kassam, The Guardian]