America’s top spy agency was authorised by a US court in 2010 to carry out surveillance on the BJP along with five other political organisations across the globe, including Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and Pakistan People’s Party, according to a classified document.
The BJP figures in the list of foreign political parties along with Lebanon’s Amal, the Bolivarian Continental Coordinator of Venezuela, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, Egyptian National Salvation Front and the Pakistan People’s Party for whom the National Security Agency (NSA) had sought permission to carry out surveillance, says the document made public by The Washington Post.
The document lists the 193 foreign governments as well as foreign factions and other entities that were part of a 2010 certification approved by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The list includes India.
“These are the entities on which the NSA may conduct surveillance, for the purpose of gathering foreign intelligence,” the paper said, citing documents provided to it by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
It said each year a new certification must be approved by the court to permit such surveillance under Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act.
“Virtually no foreign government is off-limits for the National Security Agency, which has been authorized to intercept information ‘concerning’ all but four countries, according to top-secret documents,” The Post reported.
The four countries are Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
The certification of surveillance also includes other international organisations like World Bank, IMF, the European Union and the International Atomic Energy Agency.
“The NSA is not necessarily targeting all the countries or organizations identified in the certification, the affidavits and an accompanying exhibit; it has only been given authority to do so,” The Post said.