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EU air passenger data retention system ready for take-off, says Parliament

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Air passengers entering or leaving the European Union could soon have their personal details stored and shared among EU countries, after lawmakers voted Wednesday to move forward with the proposal.

The creation of the passenger name record (PNR) system, recording such details as who flew where, when, and how they booked, is intended to help law enforcers fight terrorism and serious crime, but civil rights groups say it is disproportionate and undermines fundamental privacy rights.

The European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (LIBE) quickly dealt with almost 900 amendments filed on the proposal, including two calling for its outright rejection, before agreeing to enter negotiations on a final text with the European Commission and the Council of the EU, composed of representatives of national governments.

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