WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on Saturday criticised US President Barack Obama’s proposal to limit the controversial surveillance programme, saying his plan is not concrete and will not change much.

In a bid to allay global outrage after the leak of the US snooping programme, Mr. Obama on Friday put an end to the surveillance of “foreign leaders of friendly nations“.

He also announced several proposals to change how the agency collects surveillance on Americans and foreign governments.

Describing the speech as embarrassing, Mr. Assange said, “We heard a lot of lies here in this speech by Obama.”

He said it is clear that Mr. Obama would not have unveiled his new spying reforms had it not been for leaks by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden other whistleblowers.

“Those national whistleblowers have forced this debate, this president has been dragged, kicking and screaming, to today’s address. He has been very reluctant to make any concrete reforms, and, unfortunately, today, we also see very few concrete reforms.

“What we see is kicking off the ball into the congressional grass, kicking it off into panels of lawyers that he will report - that he will instruct to report back at some stage in the future,” Mr. Assange said.

“The FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) court, which he named as the court that will review some of this process, is known to be the most secret captive court in the United States that’s producing secret judge - made law,” he alleged.


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