Germany investigating second U.S. spy
suspect: security sources
Send a link to a friend
[July 09, 2014]
BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany is
investigating a suspected U.S. spy in its military, a security source
said, days after the arrest of a member of its foreign intelligence
agency as a double agent tested U.S. relations already strained by
The Federal Prosecutor's office said in a statement that
authorities had begun conducting searches in Berlin on Wednesday
morning in connection with a suspected spy, who had not been
arrested. It gave no further details.
"The suspect is from the military," a security source told Reuters,
speaking on condition of anonymity.
The new investigation comes just days after Germany arrested a
31-year-old employee of the BND foreign intelligence service who
admits passing documents to a U.S. contact. The foreign ministry has
called in the U.S. ambassador for an explanation.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday that if it proved to
be true that the BND officer was spying for NATO ally the United
States, it would be a "serious case".
The documents include details of a parliamentary committee's
investigation of former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward
Snowden's allegations that Washington carried out surveillance in
Germany, including of Chancellor Merkel's telephone.
The new case, reported on Wednesday, is believed to be more serious
than last week's, Sueddeutsche Zeitung daily said in an advance copy
of Thursday's edition.
The defense ministry confirmed an investigation was going ahead but
declined to give any further details. The U.S. embassy in Berlin was
unable to comment.
The latest allegations risk further straining ties with Washington,
which have been sorely tested by reports last year of large-scale
snooping by the U.S. National Security Agency.
Merkel said on Wednesday that there were talks with the United
States, but she could not comment on their content.
[to top of second column]
Two U.S. officials familiar with the case of the arrested BND
official matter told Reuters on Monday the Central Intelligence
Agency (CIA) was involved in a spying operation against Germany that
led to the alleged recruitment of a German intelligence official.
Surveillance is a sensitive issue in a country where the memory of
the Nazi's Gestapo secret police and communist East Germany's Stasi
means the right to privacy is treasured.
After the Snowden revelations, Berlin demanded Washington agree to a
"no-spy agreement" but the United States has been unwilling to make
such a commitment. German officials also emphasize that they rely on
intelligence from U.S. agencies.
(Reporting by Sabine Siebold and Thorsten Severin Writing by
Alexandra Hudson; Editing by Stephen Brown and Ralph Boulton)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.