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US Ambassador in Germany summoned over Merkel mobile row


The chancellor expects that the US authorities would provide clarification on the full extent of the surveillance operations against Germany

USGermanyBerlin: Germany today summoned the US ambassador here over claims that Chancellor Angela Merkel’s mobile phone may have been monitored for several years by American intelligence services.

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle will meet US envoy John Emerson later in what is seen as an unusual step between close allies. Germany yesterday demanded an explanation from the US over the claims and asked the US authorities with great urgency to provide “speedy and detailed clarification”, a government spokesman said.

Germany’s external intelligence agency BND and the Federal Office for Security in Information Technology received indications for the suspected surveillance of the chancellor during an investigation, according to media reports.

Merkel called US president Barack Obama yesterday and made it clear that she “unmistakably disapproves such practices and if the indications turned out to be true, they are completely unacceptable,” the spokesman said in a press statement.

She told the president that between Germany and the US, which are close friends and partners for decades, monitoring of a head of government should never happen. “If that happens, it will be a grave breach of confidence and such practices must be stopped immediately,” she said.

The chancellor expressed the hope that the US authorities would provide clarification on the full extent of the surveillance operations against Germany, including answering the questions raised by the German government several months ago, the statement said.

As a close NATO partner of the US, Germany expects that in the future, there will be a clear mutually agreed basis for the operation of intelligence services and their cooperation.

The opposition Left party demanded chancellor Merkel to inform parliament about the indications for a possible monitoring of her mobile phone. If the suspicions were proved true, “it will be the worst breach of confidence among friends”, co-chairperson of the party Katja Kipping said in an interview.


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