I am following the story about the warrant-less wiretapping in Macedonia carried out by the secret police since it was revealed by the opposition leader in February 2015. In the early days of this political, social, and moral crisis, I noted that the opposition party SDSM, specifically its president Zoran Zaev, frist implicated the telecommunications operators in Macedonia as collaborators in the warrant-less wiretapping, only to backtrack on that statement few weeks later.
In his early statements (12.02.2015) Zoran Zaev claimed that the wiretapping could not have happened without the knowledge of the operators, but just two weeks later (27.02.2015) Zaev said that the operators have no responsibility whatsoever at a press-conference for bombshell #5. -- from The silence of the telecom operators, June 4 2015.
The telecommunications operators also maintained that they worked and still work within the law.
All of these claims were proved wrong today, November 18 2016, when at the Special prosecutor press conference (link in Macedonian) it was revealed that:
„Тhe unlawful wiretapping of several thousands people that lived in the Republic of Macedonia in the period from 2008 to 2015 violated the privacy of their personal and family life, and the secrecy of communications"
The equipment that is installed in the operators' networks and is used for surveillance of communication in a way in which the secret police has 'direct, autonomous, and uninterrupted' access is allowed by law only in a part of the period from 2008 to 2015. This period includes 1. the months from June 2010 when the new law for electronic communications came into power, until December 2010 when the Constitutional Court canceled the articles regarding the equipment and access, and 2. the period since February 2014 when the new law for electronic communications came into power, that has the same canceled provisions (on which, this time, the Constitutional Court is silent for more than a year).
In fact, in the eight-year period from 2008 to 2015, direct, autonomous, and uninterrupted access was allowed by law in only 2.5 years. This means that the operators allowed conventional access (i.e. in a way that the secret police does not access their network autonomously at their will) knowing that there is no court order for such an access to peoples' communications, or that the equipment for direct, autonomous, and uninterrupted access was working during the entire period, even when there was no law allowing that. In the latter case it would mean that such access was made available to the secret police 2 years before the law allowing it was even discussed in Parliament.
Today's SPO press conference casts a serious doubt on the claims that operators worked according to prescribed laws. The law requires that telecommunications operators must cooperate with the SPO. Morality requires that their executives at least tender their resignations.
More on the topic (though not all of it is in English):