US, German officials discuss latest spying case: White House

DPA Washington | Updated on July 09, 2014

US and German law enforcement and diplomatic officials were in communication over the alleged selling of documents from a German double-agent to US spies, the White House said on Tuesday.

“The conversations were designed to try to resolve the situation appropriately,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest said.

The arrest in Germany of the suspected double-agent was the latest problem between the two countries related to American spying efforts.

It followed last year’s leaks from US National Security Agency employee Edward Snowden that exposed global internet data collection, including of Germans, and even the surveillance of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s personal mobile phone.

The US spying programme has provoked anger in Germany across the political spectrum and led to an ongoing parliamentary inquiry.

A delegation from the German parliament’s foreign affairs committee was holding meetings this week in Washington and New York to discuss a broad range of issues, including spying. Discussions have included a top US State Department official and a high-ranking US Senate member.

Philipp Missfelder, a foreign policy spokesman for the ruling conservative party’s parliamentary faction, told dpa on Tuesday he was “very, very skeptical” of getting any concessions from US authorities.

He rejected calls for a halt to US-German intelligence cooperation but conceded that “long-term damage” to trans-Atlantic relations was inevitable.

“Still, we need America as an ally and as a bullwark against international terrorism,” Missfelder said.

Published on July 09, 2014

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