TODAY   |  October 27, 2013

‘Stop watching us’: Protesters rally against NSA

Crowds gathered in Washington D.C. Saturday to protest the National Security Agency’s surveillance program, while fallout from the program takes place overseas. NBC’s Kristen Welker reports.

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>>> turning now to the government surveillance program and the continued fallout from the revelations from edward snowden . while the u.s. braces for the possibility that there is more to come from snowden , america's closest allies are demanding answers. kristen welker has more.

>> reporter: with the u.s. capitol as their backdrop, protesters turned out by the thousands with one message for the u.s. government , stop watching us.

>> they don't have a right to listen in on our conversations and go into our e-mails. we're not doing anything wrong.

>> reporter: some were elected officials.

>> they're damaging the constitution. the white house is damaging the constitution.

>> reporter: many here haled nsa leaker edward snowden a hero.

>> he's a patriot.

>> reporter: snowden sent a letter to the aclu last week urging the public to join the march writing today no telephone in america makes a call without leaving a record with the nsa. our representatives in congress tells us this is not surveillance. they're wrong. as pour the fallout overseas, in new details according to a german magazine, they targeted angela merkel 's cell phone since 2002 when she wwas still an opposition leader . several world leaders , close u.s. allies. with germany and france demanding answers, some political analysts say the nsa controversy could harm the united states ' standing abroad.

>> there's doubt today the united states is the kind of ally it used to be. we're spying on an allies. when it comes to security issues, there's doubt we will be there when the rubber hits the road in terms of some real problem out there.

>> reporter: for "today," kristen welker, nbc news washington.