US President George W. Bush on Sunday signed into law an expansion of the government's power to eavesdrop on foreign terror suspects without the need for warrants.
The law, approved by the Senate and the House of Representatives just before Congress adjourned for its summer break, was deemed a priority by Bush and his chief intelligence officials.
"When our intelligence professionals have the legal tools to gather information about the intentions of our enemies, America is safer," Bush said. "And when these same legal tools also protect the civil liberties of Americans, then we can have the confidence to know that we can preserve our freedoms while making America safer."
The administration said the measure is needed to speed the National Security Agency's ability to intercept phone calls, e-mails and other communications involving foreign nationals "reasonably believed to be outside the United States."