In a European Parliament debate last night on the future of an agreement concerning the transfer of personal data from the EU to the United States in light of the recent NSA affair, GUE/NGL MEP Cornelia Ernst said the agreement must be reformed or terminated.

“The Safe Harbour Agreement is a good thing in principle, but in practice it's pure farce. Rights are being trampled upon. The whole text is a paper tiger as violations happen without any consequences,” she said.

“There must be a transparent monitoring system, including accountability to the European Parliament. Under existing conditions, data exchange terms for US firms under Safe Harbour cannot be continued.”

“The US needs to commit to end its espionage on European citizens,” she said, asking the Commission if it will “claim our rights or treat the US negotiators like some kind of big brother while they laugh behind your back?”

“All companies must be bound by commitments and the Commission must unambiguously reinforce the obligation to respect privacy in line with the fundamental rights of 500 million EU citizens. If these conditions are not fulfilled the Safe Harbour Agreement has to be terminated.”

GUE/NGL Press:
David Lundy +32 470 85 05 09
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08

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