Brazil continues to await an explanation from Washington after revelations that the United States has collected and stored the e-mail and telephone records of millions of Brazilians, Foreign Minister Antonio Patriota said here Tuesday.

"A formal request for clarification has been transmitted and we still await a formal response," he said during a joint press conference in Brasilia with visiting Uruguayan counterpart Luis Almagro.

One of Brazil's leading newspapers, O Globo, published in its Sunday edition an expose of U.S. surveillance efforts in the South American country.

The article, based on documents provided by former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, said the U.S. National Security Agency tapped into Brazil's telecommunications network via an unnamed American telecom company that obtained access through one or more Brazilian companies.

O Globo also said the NSA and CIA maintained an intelligence listening post in Brasilia until at least 2002.

The newspaper story prompted Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff to express "grave concern," while the Communications Ministry spoke of possible criminal prosecutions over the spying.

Members of Rousseff's Cabinet met Tuesday to consider possible courses of action, including the filing of a complaint with the U.N. Human Rights Council, Patriota said. EFE