JAMES RISEN and ERIC LICHTBLAU
The New York Times
January 16, 2009
WASHINGTON — In a rare public ruling, a secret federal appeals court has said telecommunications companies must cooperate with the government to intercept international phone calls and e-mail of American citizens suspected of being spies or terrorists.
The ruling came in a case involving an unidentified company’s challenge to 2007 legislation that expanded the president’s legal power to conduct wiretapping without warrants for intelligence purposes.
But the ruling, handed down in August 2008 by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review and made public Thursday, did not directly address whether President Bush was within his constitutional powers in ordering domestic wiretapping without warrants, without first getting Congressional approval, after the terrorist attacks of 2001.
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