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US snooped on Muslim-American leaders

Published on Jul 10, 2014 4:38 AM
 

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The FBI and National Security Agency monitored the emails of prominent Muslim-American activists, academics and a political candidate, according to a report co-authored by journalist Glenn Greenwald.

The report appearing in the online news site The Intercept said the surveillance was authorised by a secret intelligence court under procedures intended to locate spies and terrorist suspects. The report, citing documents in an NSA spreadsheet leaked by former contractor Edward Snowden, showed the emails of the individuals, but not their names.

The Intercept said it identified at least five persons, all American citizens, based on their email addresses. They were Faisal Gill, a longtime Republican Party operative and one-time candidate for public office; Asim Ghafoor, an attorney who has represented clients in terrorism-related cases; Hooshang Amirahmadi, an Iranian-American professor at Rutgers University; Agha Saeed, a civil liberties activist and former professor at California State University; and Nihad Awad, the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

According to the report by Mr Greenwald and Murtaza Hussain, the spreadsheet shows 7,485 email addresses listed as monitored between 2002 and 2008. Many of the emails appeared to belong to persons suspected of being linked to Al-Qaeda, including Anwar al-Awlaki, the Yemeni-American cleric killed in a 2011 drone strike.

 
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