WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European Affairs, released the following statement after the French government today called for a ‘temporary suspension’ of major trade negotiations set to begin Monday between the United States and the European Union:

While it's important for the United States to address concerns that our European allies may have about our intelligence gathering programs, this discussion should take place in the context of both European and U.S. intelligence activities. Discussions about covert programs should have absolutely no impact on the start of important trade talks between the U.S. and the E.U.. This trade agreement holds great promise for the people and the economies of the United States and the European Union, and I look forward to the start of official negotiations next week.