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Halt NSA spy programme - taskforce

A government taskforce that reviewed the National Security Agency's surveillance programme for four months is urging President Barack Obama to stop the agency's bulk collection of telephone data and purge its massive inventory of millions of Americans' calling records.

The recommendation from the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board to abandon the NSA's phone surveillance is even more sweeping than a similar proposal from another panel of experts. That panel, the Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies, advised Mr Obama in December to restrict phone surveillance to limited court-ordered sweeps.

The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board report is being released later today.

In a speech to the nation last week, Mr Obama said the bulk phone collection programme would continue for the time being.

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