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Argentina urges joint Latin America plan against US spying

 
 
 
 
 
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Argentine Defense Minister Agustin Rossi

Argentinean Defense Minister Agustin Rossi has called for a joint plan among South American countries to cope with the US spying activities.

Rossi made the remarks during a meeting with his Brazilian counterpart Celso Amorim in Brasilia on Thursday.

“I believe that UNASUR (the Union of South American Nations) must have a joint defense strategy,” the Argentinean minister said, adding, “The issue of cyber-defense undoubtedly deserves to be addressed.”

During the talks with Amorim, Rossi further urged higher level of cooperation between the two countries.

“In this case, we are looking at a point of convergence between Argentina and Brazil,” he said.

The Brazilian minister, for his part, assured Rossi that his country would collaborate with Argentina over the issue, saying, if the UNASUR does not shoulder the task, “We can work bilaterally.”

In September, the two ministers had a meeting in Buenos Aires where the two sides signed a military cooperation agreement under which Brazil is committed to providing cyber defense training to Argentinean officers from 2014.

The agreement was made in the wake of revelations by Brazil’s O Globo newspaper.

The newspaper reported on July 7 that the US National Security Agency (NSA) had collected data on billions of telephone and email conversations in the country as well as President Dilma Rousseff’s personal communications.

Reports have shown that Argentina was has been also targeted by the NSA.

Concerns over Washington’s espionage rose after former NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked classified data about Washington’s massive surveillance programs.

The former CIA employee leaked two top secret US government spying programs under which the NSA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) are eavesdropping on millions of American and European phone records and the Internet data from major Internet companies such as Facebook, Yahoo, Google, Apple, and Microsoft.

The NSA scandal took even broader dimensions when Snowden revealed information about its espionage activities targeting friendly countries.

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