Europshere roundup: More spying row as “Fresh claims emerge in US-Germany spying row…


Morning Brief: NSA Monitored 60 Million Calls in Spain in One Month

NSA Monitored 60 Million Calls in Spain in One Month

Top News: A report that the National Security Agency monitored 60 million Spanish telephone calls over the course of a one-month period prompted calls from Spain that that the United States must explain the extent of its intelligence gathering activities.

The report — based on documents provided by Edward Snowden, authored by Glenn Greenwald, and published in the newspaper El Mundo — covered NSA monitoring of phone calls in Spain between Dec. 10, 2012, and Jan. 8, 2013. The tracking carried out by the agency appears to have focused on the serial number of the phones used, who made and received the phone call, and its duration — and not the content of the call. The Spanish Foreign Ministry said that such activities, if confirmed, would be “improper and unacceptable between partners and friendly countries.”

Fresh claims emerge in US-Germany spying row


Barack Obama knew his intelligence services were eavesdropping on Angela Merkel as long ago as 2010, according to a report published yesterday (27 October) by German newspaper Bild am Sonntag, which claims the US president did not trust her handling of the eurozone crisis.


Germany received information this week that the US National Security Agency (NSA) had bugged Merkel’s mobile phone, prompting Berlin to summon the US ambassador, a move unprecedented in post-war relations between the close allies.

EU to push ahead on data protection despite UK opposition


SPECIAL REPORT / The European Commission is set to ignore attempts to delay the implementation of a proposed new data protection regulation (DPR) suggested at last week?s EU summit, claiming that the meeting’s conclusions have been misinterpreted.


EurActiv has learned that the EU executive instead believes that a mandate to push forward with new rules by spring next year remains possible, and that this can be achieved even in the face of strong opposition from the UK.

For full background coverage see Statewatch Observatory: EUUK-USA Data Surveillance:

United States tracked Merkel’s phone since 2002: report

The United States may have bugged Angela Merkel‘s phone for more than 10 years, according to a news report


Spooks throw Obama under the bus: He knew about Merkel spying since 2010

An anonymous “US intelligence source” told a German newspaper that Obama had been briefed on the fact that the NSA had tapped German chancellor Angela Merkel’s phone in 2010, and that he’d personally let it go. Expect a lot more of this, as spooks who are sick of being kicked around for conducting the spying that high-ranking administration officials had been delighted to green-light start to whisper the names of their collaborators in government.


?Deeply sad? EU leaders pledge ?determined action? to avert more Lampedusas

A newly-established task force on the Mediterranean will report at the next summit of EU leaders in December before a more comprehensive review of EU immigration and asylum policies is launched in June next year.

The EU?s 28 heads of states and government expressed ?deep sadness? after the Lampedusa tragedy, which saw hundreds of African migrants lose their lives earlier this month as they tried to reach the small Italian island, which acts as a gateway for asylum seekers trying to enter Europe.

 Obama has no appetite for EU-US summits. Why?

Many have noticed that the EU and the USA don?t hold summits as they normally should. It has been explained that US President Barack Obama wanted to concentrate more on internal issues, that he was against meeting only for the sake of the photo opportunity and insisted that meetings should be held if something important needed to be decided.

NSA spied on 60 million Spanish phone calls in a month: report

The US National Security Agency recently tracked over 60 million calls in Spain in the space of a month, a Spanish newspaper said Oct 28

US ended Merkel spying program: Report

The National Security Agency stopped spying on German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other world leaders after the White House learned of the snooping

MAIN FOCUS: Czechs face difficult formation of government | 28/10/2013

Running for election for the first time, the protest party founded by Czech entrepreneurAndrej Babi? emerged as the second-strongest party after the Social Democrats in the Czech Republic’s parliamentary elections held on Friday and Saturday. The lack of a clear majority for any party means that forming a government looks set to be a difficult process. Commentators see the results as an expression of the population’s weariness with politics and call on the mainstream parties to react to the rise of the populists.

British Muslims defiant over al-Shabab threat

UK Muslims are speaking out against a call by al-Shabab for more international “do it yourself” attacks.

Britain is held back by its business culture, not the EU

British ministers like to talk of the British economy being in a ?global race?, and of the need for their countrymen to shape up and raise their game if they are to compete in the global economy. In practice, they mean less red tape, tax cuts for business, and reforms aimed at making it easier to hire and fire employees. Many Conservatives blame the regulatory burden on the EU, and want to either renegotiate the terms of Britain?s membership or withdraw altogether. With the notable exception of Liberal-Democrat Business Secretary, Vince Cable, these ministers never mention business short-termism, and the British system of corporate governance that encourages it. Yet this is undoubtedly the most important reason for the UK now having the second lowest investment rate in the OECD (after Ireland, where investment is very volatile). The government wants to rebalance the UK economy towards investment and exports. This will require a reform of corporate governance, especially the incentives faced by executives.

 Pro-European Czech party begins tough coalition talks


The Czech Social Democratic Party (CSSD) won a slim victory in a parliamentary election on Saturday (26 October) but faced a tough task forming a government after a wave of voter anger over sleaze and budget cuts propelled new protest parties into parliament.


With most results in, Bohuslav Sobotka’s centre-left, pro-European Social Democrats had 21% of the vote, well short of the 30% they had targeted and in need of more than one coalition partner to build a stable government.

On the Kingdoms of Spain

90,000 people attended a pro-independence concert at the Nou Camp football stadium in Barcelona. The full mosaic spelled out the words 'Freedom 2014 Catalunya'. Image Copyright Demotix. June 29, 2013.90,000 people attended a pro-independence concert at the Nou Camp football stadium in Barcelona. The full mosaic said ?Freedom 2014 Catalunya’. Image Copyright Demotix. June 29, 2013.

Council of Europe Condemns Deterioration of Human Rights in Spain


Queue outside a soup kitchen. Photo from the blog «Verdad y justicia, por Dios» [Truth and Justice, for God's sake]Queue outside a soup kitchen. Photo from the blog «Verdad y justicia, por Dios» [Truth and Justice, for God’s sake]

Serbia: Jovanka Broz, Widow of Tito, Dies Isolated and Forgotten

She was a revolutionary, a commended war veteran, a style icon and first lady to the leader of the only socialist country in the world that refused to be a Soviet satellite. Jovanka Broz (nee Budisavljevi?), widow of Marshall Josip Broz Tito, passed away in Belgrade [en] on October 20, 2013. On Saturday, October 23, Jovanka Broz was honored with a state funeral in Serbia’s capital and buried in the mausoleum known as ?The House of Flowers?[en] next to her husband, a full 33 years after his death.

Libya instability fuels EU migrant fears

A massive influx of sub-Saharan African immigrants could wreak havoc on domestic politics, with several anti-EU parties looking to exploit immigration policies
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