Omar Brouksy was selected for surveillance by an NSO client in Morocco in 2018. Forbidden Stories was unable to analyze the phone to confirm the infection.
Who is he?
Omar Brousky is a Moroccan journalist who worked for Le Journal Hebdomadaire and later for the wire service AFP. Journal hebdomadaire, where Brouksy served as editor-in-chief, was considered one of the bastions of Morocco’s independent press until it was shut down in 2010 after publishing an investigation into the involvement of certain Socialist Party leaders in a 1972 coup d’etat that roiled Moroccan politics.
Brouksy has written two books that have been banned in Morocco: “Mohammed VI derrière les masques. Le fils de notre ami” (“Behind the Masks of Mohammed VI: The Son of Our Friend”) and “La République de Sa Majesté. France-Maroc, liaisons dangereuses” (“The Republic of His Majesty: France and Morocco’s Dangerous Ties”). The journalist told the Forbidden Stories consortium that freedom of the press in Morocco has been steadily eroded since 2003, beginning with the arrest of journalist and satirist Ami Lmrabet, who was charged with insulting the King and later pardoned after going on a hunger strike in prison.
In 2012, Brouksy’s AFP press accreditation was temporarily revoked after he covered an election result in which he referred to “a power struggle between the government and the Royal Palace.” “If you know you’re under surveillance, you are necessary going to self-censure,” he said. “It’s very insidious. If you know you’re being watched, you’re going to think about that everytime you type a line on your keyboard.”
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Moroccan authorities said there was no proof of them being a client of NSO Group. NSO Group did not answer Forbidden Stories’ questions on specific targets but said it “will continue to investigate all credible claims of misuse and take appropriate action based on the results of these investigations.”