NSA bulk spying may see termination of EU-US agreements – MEP resolution

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The EU threatens the abolition of its trade agreement with the US, and other deals, if blanket surveillance by the NSA on EU citizens doesn’t stop. MEPs announced a resolution that wraps up a six-month inquiry into America’s violation of data privacy.

Edward Snowden became one of the pillars of this resolution, following an invitation from the European Parliament to provide testimony for the inquiry. What the MEPs found was that the NSA used the EU’s segmentation against it, employing loopholes in their respective laws to gain access to information, often with their unwitting help.

The non-binding resolution voted for on Wednesday calls for the suspension of existing agreements with the US, including bank data sharing and the agreement on EU citizen data being passed to the US by non-EU companies, as well as proposing to keep questions of data protection separate from the EU-US free trade talks. The European Parliament also said it wants a separate digital bill of rights for its citizens.

A serious threat is the abolition of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, the aim of which is the removal of trade barriers in a wide range of economic sectors to facilitate the flow of goods and services between the EU and the US. The resolution calls for the EP to hold off its final agreement with the TTIP unless it starts taking into account the fundamental rights of EU citizens. The resolution argues that consenting to the deal is meaningless if blanket mass surveillance including that on political and diplomatic bodies, isn’t stopped.

Fighting terrorism does not justify such means, the legislative body believes.

The resolution also calls for an “immediate suspension” of the voluntary data protection standards for non-EU companies that pass EU citizen data to the US – otherwise known as the Safe Harbor agreement. The EP argued that current regulations don’t provide enough safety on the European side, and therefore urged the US to propose new personal data transfer rules that are able to meet EU requirements.

Another agreement that could get the ax is the Terrorist Finance Tracking Program (TFTP), until authorities can..

Read more: http://rt.com/news/nsa-eu-agreements-resolution-522/