In an interview with the UAE daily Al Khaleej, Al Tamim said the fear of
U.S. espionage was the reason that the emirates imposed restrictions on
BlackBerry. He said Israel and NATO states could also be using BlackBerry to
spy on the UAE.
"The West has accused us of curbing the liberties of BlackBerry users,
while America, Israel, Britain and other countries are allowed access to all
transferred data," Al Tamim said on Sept. 3.
This marked the first time the UAE has accused Washington of spying. Al
Tamim has been regarded as the leading security official in the UAE and
responsible for the investigation of the assassination of Hamas's
procurement chief in Dubai in January 2010, an attack blamed on Israel.
Al Tamim did not elaborate on U.S. espionage efforts in the UAE. The
U.S. military has used the UAE for combat air and other missions as well as
an F-16 training center.
The UAE has given BlackBerry, with 500,000 users in the GCC state, until
Oct. 11 for access to encrypted messages. Officials said espionage agents
and saboteurs could use BlackBerry for advanced encrypted communications.