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Next Media: US spying on foreign countries through embassies
30 Oct 2013
It was revealed recently that the National Security Agency secretly monitored German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cell phone and has also used the American Embassy in Berlin as a surveillance station, according to German media Spiegel.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that the U.S. is tapping telephones and monitoring communications networks from surveillance facilities in US embassies and consulates across east and south-east Asia, including Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Phnom Penh, Yangon, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Taipei.
Embassies are supposed to improve relationships between governments …
“Allied” behaviour between NATO allies: the United States NSA spying on all NATO allied governments and their citizens.
“Allied” behaviour between two NATO allies: sabre-rattling between Turkey and Greece.
More NATO allies who are also European Union allies …
From daily The Independent in Britain:
Germany demands explanation from British ambassador over ‘secret listening post’ in Berlin
Foreign minister summons ambassador to provide explanation after report in The Independent
Nigel Morris, Tony Paterson
Berlin, Tuesday 05 November 2013
The German Government called in the British ambassador today to demand an explanation over concerns the United Kingdom operated a secret listening post from the roof of its embassy in Berlin.
Guido Westerwelle, its foreign minister, summoned Simon McDonald to provide an explanation following the exclusive revelations in The Independent today.
In a dramatic intervention, Berlin left no doubt over the seriousness with which it viewed the allegations, with its Foreign Ministry saying the ambassador was reminded that “tapping communication from an embassy would be violation of international law”.
A Foreign Office spokeswoman confirmed: “Her Majesty’s Ambassador attended a meeting with a senior official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at their invitation this afternoon.”
David Cameron‘s official spokesman insisted the ambassador had been “invited”, rather than summoned, but would not discuss the content of the meeting
“We don’t comment on intelligence matters,” he said.
The diplomatic row came after senior figures from Ms Merkel’s ruling Christian Democratic party said they were outraged by reports that GCHQ had installed a clandestine listening post on the roof of Berlin’s British Embassy.
Commentators pointed out that the embassy building in Berlin’s Wilhelmstrasse was merely 200 yards from the German parliament or Bundestag and MPs’ adjoining offices.
Wolfgang Bosbach, a home affairs specialist for Ms Merkel’s party said the revelation showed that it was high time for a “No Spy” agreement between London and Berlin. “Since disclosures about the Tempora spying programme, we have been aware of the extent to which the British carry out data surveillance,” he said. “The latest developments show that we should also reach a ” No spy” agreement with Great Britain,” he said in a reference to the agreement currently being negotiated between in Berlin and Washington.
Mr Bosbach said such an agreement would only work if both sides abided by a mutual obligation to refrain from spying on each other and that its would have to be subjected to regular tests to ensure that no one was cheating. “It is regrettable that such agreement should be necessary at all between partners, but total surveillance is completely unacceptable and action is needed,” he insisted.
But Hans-Peter Uhl – an MP in the Christian Social Union, the Bavarian sister party of Ms Merkel’s conservatives – said he was sceptical about no spy agreements. “You can make many agreements with partners, including Great Britain, but their real value is uncertain,” he said. Mr Uhl said technical answers were needed as well as legal and political responses. “Our aim must be to develop Germany technology so that it can protect our data,” he said. ” There won’t be a perfect solution, but we have to make it more difficult for spies irrespective of where they come from,” he insisted.
Berlin’s Tagesspiegel newspaper noted that at the recent EU summit at the end of October, David Cameron had joined the leaders other EU member states in condemning the US National Security Agency for bugging Ms Merkel’s mobile telephone for over a decade.
First it was the US — and now it turns out the UK might have been spying from its embassy in Berlin, too. Officials at Germany’s Foreign Ministry responded Tuesday by inviting Britain’s ambassador for a lecture: here. And here.
How the British state now snoops on those who ask questions of it. The police attempt to get an activist to spy on fellow Cambridge students backfired – but the monitoring of citizens’ legitimate activity is now a familiar story: here.
- Germany summons UK ambassador over spying report (cnn.com)
- Germany calls in British ambassador over Berlin spying claim (telegraph.co.uk)
- Germany calls in UK ambassador over spy claims (theguardian.com)
- Germans: European spy agencies swap tech tips (boston.com)
- British ambassador summoned over alleged spy posts in Berlin (irishtimes.com)
- Spy claims test US ties, says Merkel (bbc.co.uk)
- German lawmaker asks for UK ‘spy’ files (nzherald.co.nz)
- Germany seeks credible pledges from US on spying (worldbulletin.net)
- Berlin seeks ‘credible and verifiable’ pledges from US on spying – Reuters UK (uk.reuters.com)
- More NSA spying leaks land Brits in hot water with Germany (thebricspost.com)