Obama talks with Mexico, Brazil leaders on NSA
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — President Barack Obama said Friday his administration will work with the governments of Brazil and Mexico to resolve tensions over allegations that the U.S. monitored their communications.
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff remained combative, insisting she wants to know “everything” about U.S. surveillance and that spying on a friendly country is incompatible with democratic alliances.
Obama met separately with Rousseff and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto on the sidelines of an international economic summit in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Obama said he assured both leaders he takes very seriously the allegations of spying on their communications by the National Security Agency. He said he promised to address their concerns.
Both leaders have expressed outrage over revelations that the NSA kept tabs on their communications. Pena Nieto says it would constitute an illegal act. Rousseff responded by canceling a trip to Washington by a team of aides preparing for her upcoming U.S. visit.
Rousseff remained firm as she spoke to reporters at the end of the G-20 summit.
“I think is very serious to spy on a democratic country, very serious. I don’t see how someone can defend spying on a democratic country, or spying on the privacy of people,” she said.
“I made him (Obama) see that the relationship that we had, based on the fact that we are big democracies in this part of the world, is incompatible with the act of spying.”
“President Obama told me — and repeated — that he wants to create political conditions for my trip to the United States,” she said. “I want to know everything that they have. Everything.”
Brazil’s minister for external relations, Luiz Alberto Figueiredo, is expected to meet with the U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice on Sept. 11 to discuss the matter.