US spying: Who do you believe? Snowden or Key?

New Zealanders believe Edward Snowden ahead of John Key when it comes to the US spying on Kiwis, the Green Party has boldly claimed.

According to the opposition, Key has previously downplayed New Zealanders concerns that the US National Security Agency (NSA) has been involved in spying on New Zealanders, but recent findings now suggest otherwise.

The results of a Stuff Ipsos poll released last week shows 71.6 per cent of Kiwis believe United States spy agencies are gathering data on New Zealanders and 61.8 per cent of those people do not support the US being able to do so.

“New Zealanders know the NSA does not discriminate about who they spy on,” says Steffan Browning, security intelligence spokesperson, Green Party.

“The Government’s active involvement in the 5 Eyes network means we are part of both a spying and spied on ring.

“New Zealanders have looked at the facts and concluded that John Key isn’t being totally upfront about the information being shared in 5 Eyes.”

According to Browning, Kiwis believe Snowden over the Prime Minister.

“Not only do New Zealanders not believe the Prime Minister about spying, they also think that the US spying on us is wrong,” he adds.

“The evidence of spying on New Zealanders is stacking up against John Key. President Barack Obama has said the US doesn’t have a “no spying” agreement with any country but Key continues to insist the NSA doesn’t spy on us.

“Previous leaks from whistle-blower Edward Snowden have revealed that the personal data of citizens from the US, the UK and Australia is being shared amongst the 5-Eyes network. We also know from previous leaks that the NSA are willing and able to carry out mass surveillance on New Zealanders.

“John Key’s credibility on spying has taken a further knock today with his ambiguity around New Zealand’s reintegration into the 5 Eyes information sharing network while he has been the Prime Minister.

“It looks like John Key has had another brain fade about changes made in 2009 that opened the flow of information that the 5 Eyes network shared with his Government. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence could remember New Zealand’s reintegration in 2009 but John Key couldn’t.

“It is time for John Key to come clean on what 5 Eyes is getting up to, and specifically how New Zealanders are spied on and how that information is used.”

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