Germany, Brazil Take NSA Spying Gripes to U.N.

Nations want massive American digital surveillance reined in

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Brazil Presidency Handout / Roberto Stuckert Filho / Reuters

Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff, right, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel pose during a meeting at Santiago, in this photo provided by the Brazilian Presidency Jan. 26, 2013.

Brazil and Germany have taken their outrage over American espionage to the U.N., asking for a resolution to safeguard Internet privacy that would ostensibly restrain National Security Agency (NSA) forays into foreign digital communications, diplomatic sources told Foreign Policy.

Germany claims that Chancellor Angela Merkel and dozens of other world leaders are victims of NSA surveillance. And last month Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff decried U.S. spying against her country as “a breach of international law.”

Although the U.N. has no real scope to bridle secret NSA activities in practice, the proposed extending to the web of privacy safeguards currently contained in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights would been seen as a pointed message.

[Foreign Policy]