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AP-gate, the new scandal of Washington

Twenty telephone lines of the news agency were spied on. Records of telephone traffic were obtained.

WASHINGTON – The news that the telephones of the Associated Press, one of the world’s greatest and oldest press agencies, have been secretly monitored and likely tapped by the Department of Justice of the Obama administration has aroused indignation and alarmed the whole world.

From April to May 2012: twenty telephone lines of the news agency were spied on. Records of telephone traffic were obtained. The president of the United States acknowledged as much, vowing to find those responsible and prosecute the guilty, but he also highlighted the need to balance freedom of the press and national security requirements for investigations of Al-Quaeda in Yemen.

The tapped telephone lines include users in New York, Hartford and Washington, one of which, in the press office of the US House of Representatives used by AP reporters, whose incoming and outgoing calls were recorded.

“This is a severe violation of the Constitutional right of collecting and spreading information”, top managers of the Associated Press claimed. “The government has no right to collect information concerning our activity.”

“This is only the latest conflict between information agencies and federal investigators,” The New York Times states, “and it is taking place in the context of an aggressive policy of the Obama administration in order to prevent the publication of information regarding national security”.

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