Roger Yu, USA TODAY
USA TODAY - Seeking broader First Amendment protection in the U.S., The Guardian, the British newspaper that broke the story on massive surveillance programs run by the National Security Agency, said Friday it has formed a partnership with The New York Times to publish more related stories.
In the partnership, The Guardian will give the Times access to some "sensitive cache of documents" leaked by Edward Snowden, a former NSA employee who leaked NSA documents that The Guardian used to break the surveillance story.
Snowden, who is aware of the partnership, fled the U.S. earlier this year to avoid prosecution and remains in Russia after he was granted temporary asylum.
In particular, pressure from the Government Communications Headquarters -- a British intelligence agency that allegedly spied on foreign politicians at G20 summits -- to hand over sensitive files drove The Guardian to seek out the U.S. partner, the paper said on its website.
"In a climate of intense pressure from the U.K. government, the Guardian decided to bring in a U.S. partner to work on the GCHQ documents provided by Edward Snowden. We are working in partnership with the NYT and others to continue reporting these stories," The Guardian said.
The New York Times didn't immediately comment on the partnership.
But The Guardian said the First Amendment laws are more favorable in the U.S. for their plans to use existing documents. The partnership will enable the newspapers to place "documents on GCHQ" from Snowden "beyond government reach," it said.
"Journalists in America are protected by the First Amendment which guarantees free speech and in practice prevents the state seeking pre-publication injunctions or prior restraint," the paper wrote on its website.