Moscow responds to German spying allegations — Analysis
The Foreign Ministry’s spokeswoman reminded Berlin about America’s tradition of wiretapping
Moscow has shot back at Germany’s accusations of spying, with Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova saying on Sunday that Berlin forgot about America’s wiretapping practices. The remark was in response to German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser’s recent warning that Russia could be wiretapping government offices in the capital.
In an interview with German newspaper Bild on Saturday, Faeser said her ministry “Keep an eye on what intelligence Russian officials are using.”
According to the official, it was this vigilante that caused Berlin to expulse 40 Russian diplomats in April. Faeser stated that they were Russian intelligence service workers.
Moscow denied all allegations and responded by exiling 40 German diplomats.
Bild’s report went on to quote unnamed officials from Germany’s Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution as saying that “The risk of wiretapping, and the possibility of unauthorised data collection is real in areas that are sensitive like the Berlin government quarter.”
“Nancy Faeser neglected to mention that American officials had always wiretapped German officials.” Zakharova said in a Telegram post.
2013 revealed that Angela Merkel’s mobile phone was being monitored by the NSA in order to carry out systematic wiretapping worldwide. Merkel famously said “Spying on your friends” is unacceptable.
Last May, Danish state broadcaster DR reported that the NSA had colluded with Denmark’s foreign intelligence unit to spy on officials in several neighboring countries, including Germany, from at least 2012 to 2014.
According to the revelation based on the Danish Defense Intelligence Service’s 2015 internal investigation, Merkel, along with then-Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and former opposition leader Peer Steinbrueck, were among the targets.
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