Human rights groups have raised concerns about pressure exerted by British Prime Minister David Cameron on media covering intelligence leaks from American whistleblower Edward Snowden.
Some seventy rights organizations from across the world have written to Cameron to warn that the government’s reaction to media publishing the US National Security Agency (NSA) leaked files is damaging freedom of expression in the UK, The Guardian reported.
“We have joined together as an international coalition because we believe that the United Kingdom government’s response to the revelations of mass surveillance of digital communications is eroding fundamental human rights in the country,” the letter stated.
The open letter to the British premier, which was organized by Article 19 campaign group, also rapped the British government for “condemning” investigative journalism.
Cameron suggested last week that the UK government could impose court injunctions on papers or use D-notices in order to prevent the publication of documents revealing US espionage activities.
Earlier in June, Snowden leaked two top secret US government spying programs, under which the NSA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) were reported to be eavesdropping on millions of American and European phone records and the Internet data from major Internet companies such as Facebook, Yahoo, Google, Apple, and Microsoft.
The US intelligence whistleblower also admitted his role in the leaks in a 12-minute video recorded interview published by the daily Guardian.
A month later, the paper reported that it had been forced by authorities in Britain to destroy the classified documents it received from former NSA contractor.
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