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Obama Signs Foreign Surveillance Law

President Barack Obama
U.S. President Barack Obama has signed into law a five-year extension of the United States government's authority to monitor the overseas activities of suspected foreign spies and terrorists.

The law, known as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, allows the U.S. government to monitor overseas phone calls and e-mails without obtaining court orders.

The Senate approved the renewal bill on December 28.

The law does not apply to U.S. citizens.

In order to monitor the activities of Americans, the government must obtain a warrant from a special court comprised of 11 U.S. judges appointed by the Supreme Court.

Based on reporting by AP and ITAR-TASS