STOCKHOLM (AP) — Left-wing and Internet freedom activists are likely to protest against U.S. online spying when Barack Obama visits Stockholm this week, but Swedish government officials say they won’t raise the sensitive issue with the U.S. president.
Foreign Minister Carl Bildt told The Associated Press on Monday that Internet surveillance activities are happening worldwide and that “we are not entirely innocent ourselves. We conduct both intelligence and security operations on the Net. But they are regulated by law.”
Bildt also noted that the European Union already is in discussions about “data privacy” with the United States.
The Swedish government sees itself as a champion of Internet freedom but critics have accused it of double standards for not speaking out against U.S. surveillance programs exposed by National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden.