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Israeli Court Agrees to Keep NSO Legal Proceedings in Chambers

An appeal was submitted by the Israeli state attorney to the Tel Aviv District Court on Sunday, asking that no information on petition against the cyber-surveillance company could be made public

Omer Kabir 16:0216.01.20

Tel Aviv District Court Judge Rachel Barkai has approved on Thursday a request by the Israeli Ministry of Defense that proceedings regarding a petition filed by members of human rights organization Amnesty International against cyber surveillance company NSO Group be conducted in chambers. The appeal was submitted by the Israeli state attorney to the court on Sunday, asking that no information on the proceedings could be made public by the press or by private individuals. 

 

Amnesty’s original petition,submitted in May, asked for NSO’s export license to be rescinded after its malware was allegedly used to spy on an Amnesty staff member. Thirty of the organization’s members in Israel are represented in the petition, filed by Israeli human rights lawyer Eitay Mack in collaboration with Amnesty International and the Robert L. Bernstein Institute for Human Rights at the New York University (NYU).

NSO's offices. Photo: Orel Cohen NSO's offices. Photo: Orel Cohen
Amnesty has filed two previous requests with the Israeli defense ministry to halt NSO’s license but was turned down, according to the petition.

 

Responding to Calcalist's request for comment, a spokeswoman for NSO called the petition "baseless," saying that NSO adheres to Israeli laws and to clear ethical guidelines put in place to prevent misuse of the technology.