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Europe

EU, US Reach Agreement on Passenger Data

After months of transatlantic wrangling, the EU and US reach an agreement on sharing passenger information for all transatlantic flights.

After months of transatlantic wrangling, the European Union and the United States on Wednesday reached an agreement on sharing passenger information for all transatlantic flights. The US has been pressing strongly for the agreement, saying it needs the information for its fight against terrorism. Originally, the U.S. had demanded that the data should be kept for up to 50 years, but in the compromise deal, it will only store the information for 3.5 years. The deal also places strict restrictions on which U.S. agencies can access the data. The agreement means that most of the personal data given at the time of check-in will be sent to the US. "The EU cannot refuse to its ally in the fight against terrorism an arrangement that Member States would be free to make themselves," said EU Commissioner Frits Bolkestein. The agreement means that most of the personal data given at the time of check-in will be sent to the US. ( EUobserver.com)