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Edward Snowden says British surveillance is out of control at Observer Ideas festival

A documentary on Snowden, called 'Citizenfour', was premiered on Friday.

By Thor Benson
Edward Snowden in 2013 (CC/ wikimedia.org/ McZusatz)
Edward Snowden in 2013 (CC/ wikimedia.org/ McZusatz)

LONDON, Oct. 12 (UPI) -- Edward Snowden says government surveillance in the United Kingdom is out of control.

Snowden appeared via Skype at the Observer Ideas festival Sunday and claimed British domestic espionage is much worse than its equivalent in the United States. He also said the lack of media coverage in Britain concerning surveillance does a "disservice to the public."

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"In the UK ... is the system of regulation where anything goes. They collect everything that might be interesting," Snowden said, according to The Guardian. "It's up to the government to justify why it needs this. It's not up to you to justify why it doesn't ... This is where the danger is, when we think about ... evidence being gathered against us but we don't have the opportunity to challenge that in courts. It undermines the entire system of justice."

Snowden remarked that his life in Moscow has its comforts, but he has given up a lot since becoming a whistleblower. He said he misses having a job, a home and being with family. He then explained why it's all worth it for him.

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"What kind of world do we want to live in? Do you want to live in a world in which governments make decisions behind closed doors? And when you ask me, I say no," Snowden said.

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