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European Commission


Brussels, 26 November 2013

Statement by Vice-President Viviane Reding on her meeting with U.S. Senator Christopher Murphy

Following her meeting with Senator Christopher Murphy, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Subcommittee on Europe, Congressman Gregory Meeks and Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart Vice-President Viviane Reding, the EU's Justice Commissioner said:

"Last month, our European Parliament went to see the U.S. government to discuss recent U.S. surveillance revelations and data protection. Today, it is the U.S. Congress that is coming to see the European government to pursue the dialogue. This is the right way forward. Continuous dialogue builds mutual trust. Knowledge and understanding provide the best defence against ignorance. We are talking and listening, not spying on each other.

It was a good meeting that I had with Senator Murphy and his delegation. I have made it very clear that the Commission expects the U.S. to follow up on their recent political commitment to give EU citizens not resident in the U.S. enforceable rights, notably the possibility to obtain judicial redress in the U.S. when their personal data is misused. I have also made clear that Europe expects to see the necessary legislative change in the U.S. sooner rather than later, and in any case before summer 2014.

As Senator Murphy has said himself "words are not enough". I therefore now hope to see words turn into action."

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