tv C-SPAN2 Weekend CSPAN June 15, 2013 6:00am-7:01am EDT
>> a commission statement on u.s. internet surveillance on european citizens. the nsa's presence -- i would like to inform my colleagues that during this debate there will be a round of speakers on the various political groups you will not deal to use your blue cards and i will now give the floor to commissioner borge. >> yes madam president. thank you. i'm reading the statement on behalf of the commission and i'm here today instead of the vice president who was unavailable. the commission is concerned about recent media reports that
the united states authorities are processing on a large scale the data of european union citizens using major u.s. on line service providers. programs such as the so-called prism and the laws on the basis of which such programs are authorized in danger the fundamental right of privacy and to data protection of e.u. citizens. the prism case as reported in the media is also likely to reinforce the concerns of e.u. citizens regarding the use of their personal data on line and in the cloud. already in 2012, 70% of the e.u. citizens were concerned that their personal data could be
used for the purpose of their been the one for which it was collected. the prism case as reported in the media also highlights the difference between the european union and the united states approaches to data protection. whereas in the united states legal system only u.s. citizens and residents benefit from prosecution and safeguards. in the european union everyone's personal data and the confidentiality are recognized and protected as fundamental rights irrespective of their nationality. these reports are particularly worrisome. the issue at hand is not a new one. it has been tackled by the commission in the past.
and to give a single example. the commission has raised the access to personal data of europeans, of european citizens in the framework of the negotiations with the united states for the general data protection in the field of police and judicial corporations. as you know very well vice president redding has received a mandate to negotiate this agreement with the united states and she is keeping this house and its particular members of the labor committee informed about the progress of these negotiations. the commission is asking for clear commitments from the united states to the fundamental right of e.u. citizens for data protection and in the same way as it is afforded united states
residents. as far as the prism program is concerned, the commission will raise this matter with the united states at the earliest possible opportunity. it will request verifications as to whether access to personal data within the framework of the prism program is limited to implemented cases and based on increased suspicions or if it allows bank transfers of data. vice president redding will raise this issue with force and determination at the upcoming e.u. u.s. ministerial in on friday in dublin. beyond context with united states, the european union can also act by making sure that it
equips itself with robust legislation, able to confront such situations and i referred in particular to data collection. under the current new legislation the 1995 data protection directive, when the rights of a member states are concerned, it is for a congressional judge to determine whether the data can be lawfully transmitted in accordance with requirements with a national, european or international. the commission believes that these concerns need to be further addressed. this is the aim of the proposed general data protection regulation. the reform proposed by vice president redding maintains current high-level of data protection in the e. u. by updating citizens rights,
guaranteeing they know when their privacy has been violated and making sure that when they are -- is required the consent israel. more specifically, the e.u. data protection reform should ensure that the european union is able to in particular situations such as the prism program through its data protection rules with a clear vision of territorial scope. non-european companies when offering goods and services to european consumers will have to apply the e.u. data protection law, a broad definition of data, clear responsibilities for processors and strong rules for international transfers.
the proposed general protection regulation reflects our view that in order to avoid -- access by third country law enforcement authorities to the personal data of e.u. citizens held on the servers of u.s. companies should be done via establishing terminals such as the e.u.-u.s. mutual assistance agreements. the european parliament has submitted amendments to further clarify in the provisions the conditions under which the judgment of a tribunal of a third country is enforceable under e.u. law.
the commission will look at these proposals. madam president the commission believes that the quick adoption of this proposal would resolve any major loopholes created when companies collect personal data of european citizens and different sovereigns. the commission therefore comes on this parliament to support the objectives and principles of the e.u. data protection reform with adoption. thank you very much. >> thank you very much commissioner borge. i would like to give the floor to claudine pepper. >> and president, commissioner, my data belongs to me. that is the cornerstone of the
european thinking on delta protection. the state also recognizes that my data belongs to me. i decide what happens with it. that principle must be respected by the state. at those boundaries must be taken seriously. reports from the u.s. are cause for great concern. it is good that we are discussing the matters here today. it is good. we need to look at the right way to handle personal data. it is completely unacceptable and i would like to make that clear on behalf of the edp, it's completely and acceptable to the united states of america has different rules governing access to personal data particularly u.s. citizens and citizens on the other hand. we now need to define our targets and object this.
first and foremost we need transparency we need to know what's going on. vice president redl in and the commission as a whole has the full support of the european parliament when she calls for clarity in dublin. we need to look at the implementation of existing rules. we want transparencies from companies at google, facebook and other companies active in the u.s.. in europe their customers need clarity. it's access his access being provided to the state or not? what about the u.k. likes there are reports that the u.k. service -- secret services are allowing access to the data of european citizens. we need clarity from the british government. we need common standards, joint standards. the commission is working on a framework agreement for judicial cooperation. this is good. this is something we welcome.
perhaps we also need a framework agreement on the private data. we need local state standards agreed with u.s.. that is something that we should work towards for personal data. we need the european cloud. if european data is to be stored in the cloud it should he held in europe. then we can guarantee to our companies and citizens that the state is being stored and secured according to european standards. we need the modern e.u. data protection legislation. we cannot call our u.s. friends to order if we do not have the highest most modern standards implemented here in europe. there are developments that i have concerns about that regards the quantity of data being stored. we need to look at the technology to analyze this data where progress is made. we must be brave enough to set clear limits and standards along
the lines of what the commission is proposed. on the ninth of july we will be voting in the committee. we cannot leave ourselves open to blame. we cannot hesitate. i will call on the council to stop focusing on the minor points of detail and relook at the major challenges being faced today and come up with the results. finally it's important for the epp today that we reiterate that the u.s. is her partner. our partner. we are not in a position to build standards when it came to international terrorism, organized crime, european authorities however did benefit from the analysis carried out. bomb attack was prevented in germany because we have been tipped off by u.s. authorities. a second attack was prevented so i would like to reiterate loud and clear that the u.s. is our partner. when it comes to swift we are
still waiting for the commission to come forward with the european proposal and for the european system to analyze financial transactions. the u.s. approach u.s. approach is not our approach that we work together as but we work together as partners to achieve our common goals. thank you very much madam president read. >> thank you very much. now on behalf of the -- for four minutes. >> and president and commissioner the events of the last few days the information published by the guardian last week with regard to the u.s. system surveillance called prism and acted by the nsa allegedly in cooperation with i.t. world giants like apple, facebook, google, microsoft, skype, you youtube and al well trusted major giant companies of course shocked they are european citizens and for the acidity group we are very clear that while security is important this
has caused for our citizens a major breach of trust and for us in the snd group the ministerial meeting on the 13th and 14th of june is something that we regard as vitally important for the parliament and all the political groups give the commission their support and holding to account eric holder, the united states for what they have done in transferring allegedly bulked information, information of our citizens which may be completely unnecessary in the fight against terrorism and the fight for security of our citizens, unnecessary information which then breaches trust in the way that data is secured under the fight against terrorism and the fight to maintain security. it's that balance between our security and the need to protect data but a vital balance. the report in the guardian and "the new york times" assures that these companies that
required by the nsa to share information for antiterrorism purposes under the visa -- fisa court orders are set to do so and facilitate access to their servers to u.s. intelligence agencies possibly offering the u.s. intelligence community the possibility to send directly to company managed secure on line rooms. they are particularly concerned that generalized access to mass processes of e.u. citizens data for law enforcement or other purposes may have taken place after the responsibility of the above-mentioned companies and the framework of this program in a way that is not compliant with e.u. data protection legislation in force. we are also worried by the absence of an overall framework for ensuring the protection of personal data especially considering negotiations with the umbrella data protection agreement to join the e.u. and u.s. are ongoing since 2011
seemed to have stalled. for all of these reasons we wish to ensure that the commissioner holds to account the u.s. and to ensure that the u.s. public authorities when they are processing u.s. citizen data do so within our standards. secondly we wish to reaffirm our commitment to high-level data protection reform package along the lines originally in her proposals reinforced by amendments tabled by the profiteers improving protection requires. in this context became a quite clear that an e.u. data protection for law enforcement and security purposes by public and private actors remains extremely relevant and cannot be delayed. and finally we believe that the special data protection and data loss will be required while negotiating the e.u. u.s. tt ip
agreement in order to safeguard the maintenance of primary e.u. legislation in this field. we are well aware of the commitment of the commission to hold the u.s. to account in relation to data flaws but is extremely important in light of the prism and nsa issue that you citizens are assured of what happened in my own member state united kingdom. there is serious concern as to what has happened and trust is clearly has clearly been breached. it's up to the e.u. to play its role in ensuring that we hold to account what the united states has done in this case and that our standards are being assured that the right standards are maintained. >> thank you very much. colleagues let me remind you that the decision of the political groups, there is no procedure or blue cards in this debate and that was not --
speakers of the political groups. now i will kindly ask colleague in feld to take the floor for three minutes. >> thank you chair. colleagues, commissioner, 500 million european citizens were very shocked last week to find that a foreign nation has unlimited access to every intimate detail of their private lives. this is a very big issue. in the united states this is considered to be -- as the germans say. it was the president himself who came and answered questions of congress and the media. so what do they see in europe? first of all with all due respect to the commissioner we get the commissioner for public health to deal with this issue. while president barrasso who should have stepped into his helicopter and flown to strasbourg to answer to citizens
we have at least the responsible commissioner to come to the house. where's the responsible commissioner? why are there prime leaders of your peer? we also need to look at ourselves, colleagues. look around you. this house just over a decade ago when faced with similar situations something called echelon we decided to set up an inquiry into echelon. today we address 500 million citizens. we are failing the european citizens at a time when trust in the european union is at an all-time low. we should be ashamed of ourselves. and then to the subject matter itself. first of all, we have to be very surprised to find that the americans are spying on us because we knew about it. we have been asking questions again and again and again but
asking questions to the commission is like talking to a wall. i have a long list of long answers about fisa, but the patriot that and about the application of u.s. law and we get no answers from the european commission. the member states because there's a national debate about the same issue everywhere now, mrs. merkel we are asking the air americans for an explanation. all the member states including the u.k. and any member state, the member states are speaking doublespeak to the citizens. are we surprised that they are losing trust and actually you can say the citizens don't trust their governments anymore but the government seem to trust their citizens even less. we are also losing moral authority here. how can we tell the governments they say egypt, iran, and the other country that they should
not spy in their citizens because that has no place in democracy. if we are doing the same for our citizens we are losing credibility here. on the special relationship ,-com,-com ma i have heard nearly all the colleagues here refer to the special relationship with their best friends and closest allies, the united states but i don't know if you listen to the statement of president obama when he was addressing the american audience who were worried. he said don't worry, we are not spying on u.s. citizens. we are only spying on foreigners. foreigners, so that is us. that is the european citizens. so what kind of a special relationship is that? over the last 12 years europe has bent over backwards to be the closest ally of the americans in the fight against terrorism and i'm sure we will continue to be their ally. we need to see eye-to-eye and we expect the commission and with all due respect and i'm grateful you are here commission aboard,
this is a matter for political leadership. we need political leadership in europe to defend the rights of our citizens and the time is now. [applause] >> thank you. now we will give the floor to -- [inaudible] >> thank you very much chair. dear colleagues and dear commissioner i completely share the concerns which have been raised by all the political groups here and i would like to say that it's not only data protection, it's not only the small technical issue. this is about the rule of law and about democracy because both of them are not in line with mass survey ends, they can't be in line with mass survey and said answer people all around the world so we need to stand up here to say clearly mass surveillance is not what we want to have and we need strong data protection rules. we needed as a reconditioned for
democracy for rule of law and also for security and trust in the market as a whole. so therefore it's a very good issue that we react as europeans with creating our own standards of data protection safeguarding the rights of our citizens in the first place and decide as quickly as possible on the proposed regulation on data protection with strong standards and also with regard to state transfers. this is about companies processing personal data, masses of personal data and giving the opportunity to states authorities to access them. if you really want to have a safe european cloud we need to make sure that we have strict and strong e.u. data protection rules which are then also enforceable and which create clear set of state transfers only that will help for the
framework agreement for data protection with the u.s.. i would like to work on it and i would like to agree on standards with the united states but therefore we need movement on the other side of the atlanta. we planet. we need some legislation. we need some legislative changes because without legislative changes we will not come to a common basis. thank you very much. >> thank you very much. >> i will give the floor now to my colleague. >> commissioner, the debates here today are about increasing the trust and the faith of citizens and holding to account governments and agencies that serve and protect them. those companies already named and shamed have so far denied acting outside the law. governments in the european commission have expressed concern this morning but rightly acknowledged that it is
currently two early to draw final conclusions. yet here we are already pointing the finger. some of you are the expressing strong anti-american or anti-commission rhetoric that is all too familiar as is the opportunism and grandstanding without pausing to gather facts or proof. because this is most danger to the practice of convicting a defendant before the trial, this problem is currently working hard on reforming its data protection rules and still pursuing agreement on data exchange with the united states something which i and my group support. key to the success of being able to protect our citizens beyond their own borders is the relationship with other countries. yet i would caution the way some members in this house articulate themselves does little to bring us together and values but instead pushes us further apart. her texting citizens from
threats is a balancing act. intelligence agencies are often lambasted for not acting soon enough and then equally condemned for going too far. their successes are celebrated in private and their failings are only to the public. increasingly as we know terrorists and organized criminal groups use information a tech knowledge he against innocents and sons. therefore there must be an expectation that the same technology will be used in our response. that information must have course be used and respected in the confines of legal oversight. we must understand that we do not gain more freedoms by taking others away and their greatest asset will always be the rule of law. that is why sometimes it is necessary for us politicians to remind those with less visible power that ensuring freedom and
the safety of our citizens must not, the ultimate price of sacrifice of democracy. but it might also be worth some people in this room remembering who the real enemy is and where it is and when we want answers and the truth the friends lists and most when you talk and not when you shout madam president. >> thank you very much. >> thank you very much. dear commissioner, i am disgusted by the leaks of the secret prism program of the nsa. the agencies since 2007 has been harvesting information and assessing information on our citizens. all electronic medication
passing through american channels. this shows that they are violating the privacy of our citizens and our rights. we must not admit this spying on european citizens. ill eagles monitoring of citizens is illegal. that is why american companies which have about access to this type of data, to the u.s. government, they have violated e.u. legislation and we have to investigate this issue and we have to adopt the same measures and sanctions against these companies which we apply to others who violate our laws. the behavior of our american partners is regrettable.
>> now i give the floor to colleague benazir. >> thank you madam president. hearing you speak commissioner i have to ask -- and i know it should have been mrs. redding hand but there's nothing but the revelations that confirm the fact that all of us have been announcing for some time regarding the privacy rights in the united states. in may 2010 the president told us himself how well the u.s. constitution protected u.s. citizens rights. thanks to snowden we know that the nsa has the service of at
least nine major internet companies. now others say we didn't know this at all. we examine requests very carefully. the source of the greatest concern to us is something said by president obama himself. he said this quite boldly. he said internet surveillance does not lies u.s. citizens or people living in the u.s. territory. a judge has to authorize -- it has clearly been violated. we have proof here that anybody else can be put under surveillance freely. the european citizens do not enjoy the same rights as u.s. citizens. data is being garnered in bulk
without any way of -- you are confirming this. we can't anymore allow achieving absolute nothing. we want our citizens in europe to have their day to protect it. the situation has been going on far too long. let's put an end to all this hypocrisy. the evidence of the facts are perfectly clear. we must make sure that u.s. respect the privacy rights of the european citizens. thank you. >> that next speaker for one minute. >> president, ladies and gentlemen what would you say if the u.s. secret services were
watching you night and day, tapping your day then recording it? you wouldn't be happy with that. that is what they are doing with internet traffic of millions of people. this house is responsible for the protection of fundamental rights. this program breaches basic rights. what are we going to do? when it came to swift -- we were taken for a ride that the u.s. authorities. it cannot be this time with the grasp and we lift up our responsibilities and put our minds to ending the program. we should instigate an inquiry to see what legal implications arise from the program, what european secret services benefited from the data. and finally we should have u.s. representatives invited to this house to be accountable to it. the way we are going now is just leading away from free
democracy. >> finally i will give the floor to commissioner borg. >> thank you very much madam president and the commission i must say shares the european parliaments concerns on this prism scandal and i shall inform vice president breading of our conversation today. mrs. redding would address the -- on the 19th of june which we will -- which means she will discuss the development which will take place until that day but will also refer to her negotiations and meetings in dublin next friday. in fact she will raise our shared concerns at this meeting next friday in dublin and also
address further -- with united states attorney general holder. of course, there are two trains of thought that are not related to each other. one of them is that we should clarify with united states and make it clear that whenever a european citizen's information is concerned european rules should apply and that we are not happy with the level of detection of data information from the united states in particular even if he read as mr. mariah said, there is a difference in the whistleblower of a facility for which information could be accessed by a person who has leaked this information. in fact he said the government has granted, referring to his
government, the government has granted itself outward. it is not entitled to it. there is no public oversight. the result is people like myself have the latitude to go further than they are allowed to so we are entitled to ask questions in the next summit on whether this has been done with regard to the european citizens. at the same time, i appreciate the remarks. let us not forget who the enemy is and i can comment as a former ministerial leader leader for 10 years. what would a for -- fight against organized terrorism be without the collection of proper intelligence? but the frustration of any law
enforcement agency is it should not be a frustration. that is why terrorists and organized crime have no rules to go by law enforcement agencies in a democratic country by rule of law cannot use anything but the gloves of law and order to fight -- which is why i appreciate the comments of others who have said we have a special relationship with our u.s. partners. we have solved important investigations regarding the prevention of terrorism through shared information with our special partnership but no one should use this special relationship not to abide by the law.
international -- so this is a balancing act of retaining this partnership. but because there is a partnership that involves not only rights that keep our obligations because of the relationship as special than the obligations should be special as well and no one should be taken for granted. i appreciate also madam inver's comments on this issue and also what mr. -- said about who the proper enemy is. i would like also to record within the context of the proposal for the reform of data protection you appreciate the positive comments which have been made by different members as to the importance of adopting this new package proposed. the commission has made it clear that the extraterritorial application of laws by countries may be in breach of international law and establishes, the reform
establishes legal channels that should be used. the commission is ready to consider any improvements they european parliament would consider necessary in this respect. that is why we need to work for swift adoption of a package that some of the member states would like to see >> the following day in the european parliament catherine ashton briefed members about political unrest in turkey where protesters had been demonstrating against the government, this is an hour. >> and a