'He tried to strike a balance' - US reaction to Obama's NSA speech

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After weeks of debate, US President Barack Obama has announced additional oversight measures for National Security Agency surveillance programmes in a major speech.

Euronews correspondent Stefan Grobe reported on the mood in Washington, saying: “The general feeling here is that the president struck the right balance between national security and the need for privacy.”

Security expert James Andrew Lewis, from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, pointed out the extent to which Obama’s stance on US surveillance has evolved.

“He was a critic when he was in the Senate and now he has a very different job with very different responsibilities, he sees some of the value. And he tried to strike a balance,” Lewis told euronews.

Bruce Riedel, a former senior advisor to Obama, believes that the president has set an example for others to follow.

“I’d like to see other countries come out with an equivalent of the presidential document that says: Here are the principles upon which my intelligence service is going to operate, that they are not going to discriminate against people, that they cannot collect intelligence for the purpose of assisting corporate interests or for stealing industrial secrets,” Riedel explained.

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