MOSCOW, July 8 (Itar-Tass) - The Federation Council, the upper house of Russian parliament, began the preparations for the investigation of the facts that the Internet companies provide the data of Russian citizens to the U.S. security services. Now the Russian senators are forming the composition of a special working group, which will be approved soon, head of the interim Federation Council committee for the development of the information society Ruslan Gattarov told reporters on Monday. The committee will include officials from the Foreign Ministry, the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Russian telecommunications watchdog, two committees of the upper house of parliament (for constitutional legislation and international affairs), the State Duma and the Public Chamber.
The senator, who represents the executive authorities of the Chelyabinsk Region in the Federation Council, said with hope that the group will be able to meet already next week, but the first results of the work will be made public no earlier than in October.
In the view of Gattarov, he scheduled several international trips in September, during which the senator hopes to find international allies. “Now we are getting in touch actively with the lawmakers of other countries, first of all, Europe, and the experts, including from the United States, are getting in contact with us. Meanwhile, this is not just political activists, but the officials of the largest U.S. scientific institutions,” he said.
The senator also hopes for the aid of former CIA agent Edward Snowden, but adds with regret that he does not find it correct to seek for the meetings with the former CIA agent, because “now Snowden has a headache about other things.” “We hope that Snowden, when he settles his legal status, will cooperate with the committee, as we do not pursue national or state interests, we pursue the inviolability of personal data of people,” he explained.
Gattarov confirmed that the working group has ambitious goals. First of all, this is the creation of a separate international and interstate agency (like IAEA or a separate U.N. committee with broad powers), which will supervise the organizing patterns, storage and protection of personal data of people, as well as the rights of people in the automatic processing of this data. Secondly, the senator finds it needed to obtain compulsorily that the Internet, the rights for which the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the U.S. International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) own, were passed to the international community.