RIO DE JANEIRO – The Brazilian government condemned a U.S. spy program that reportedly targeted the nation’s leader, labeled it an “unacceptable invasion” of sovereignty and called Monday for international regulations to protect citizens and governments alike from cyberespionage.
In a sign that fallout over the spy program is spreading, the newspaper Folha de S.Paulo reported that President Dilma Rousseff is considering canceling her October trip to the U.S., where she has been scheduled to be honored with a state dinner. Folha cited unidentified Rousseff aides. The president’s office declined to comment.
The Foreign Ministry called in U.S. Ambassador Thomas Shannon and told him Brazil expects the White House to provide a prompt written explanation over the espionage allegations.
The action came after a report aired Sunday night on Globo TV citing 2012 documents from NSA leaker Edward Snowden that indicated the U.S. intercepted Rousseff’s emails and telephone calls, along with those of Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, whose communications were being monitored even before he was elected president in July 2012.
Mexico’s government said it had expressed its concerns to the U.S. ambassador and directly to the U.S. administration.
Brazilian Foreign Minister Luiz Alberto Figueiredo said, “We’re going to talk with our partners, including developed and developing nations, to evaluate how they protect themselves and to see what joint measures could be taken in the face of this grave situation.”
He added that “there has to be international regulations that prohibit citizens and governments alike from being exposed to interceptions, violations of privacy and cyberattacks.”