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Brazil’s President Calling Off State Visit to US over NSA Spying
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Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff has postponed her state visit to the United States in response to reports that NSA had spied on her personal communications.

According to a Brazilian newspaper, President Obama phoned her on Monday and tried to talk her out of it.

  
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White House officials said Obama told Rousseff that he “understands and regrets the concerns (that) disclosures of alleged US intelligence activities have generated in Brazil,” and that he is working “to move beyond this issue as a source of tension” in the relationship between the countries.

On Tuesday, Brazil’s President formally called off her state visit to the U.S. However, both the White House and the office of Brazil’s President are claiming that this is simple postponement.

Things are hardly so easy. After keeping on stressing that the NSA spying was only to detect and apprehend foreign terrorists, the question of NSA spying on the personal communications of Brazil’s President tells you what the NSA thinks of her. If such events took place at all.

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On Tuesday, the Brazil government issued a statement observing, “Illegal surveillance practices intercepting the communication and data of citizens, companies and members of the Brazilian government constitute a serious affront to national sovereignty and individual rights, and are incompatible with democratic cooperation between friendly nations.”

The statement further observed, that in the absence of a “commitment to cease such surveillance activities, the conditions are not in place for the visit to go ahead as previously scheduled.”



Inside Brazil, the furor over NSA spying is already affecting politics and economic strategies of the country.

On Tuesday again, Brazil’s Congress questioned oil industry regulator Magda Chambriard whether  NSA spying could have given US companies a competitive edge in bidding for offshore production rights of Brazil’s oil.

It is quite possible that Boeing is going to lose a sale of $ 4 billion of fighter jets to Brazil. It is also possible that US companies are going to be shunned in sectors vital to national interest like energy and telecommunications.

Brazil is already trying to pass regulations that would force companies like Google to have their datacenters within the country and ensure that data generated in Brazil, stays within Brazil.



 

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