Berlin Complains: Did US Tap Chancellor Merkel's Mobile Phone?

By Jacob Appelbaum, Holger Stark, and Jörg Schindler

Zoom
DPA

Berlin is taking seriously indications that Chancellor Angela Merkel's mobile phone might have been tapped by US intelligence, according to SPIEGEL information. Merkel spoke with President Barack Obama on Wednesday about her concerns.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel phoned United States President Barack Obama on Wednesday to discuss suspicions that she may have been targeted by US intelligence agencies for years, SPIEGEL has learned.

The chancellor asked for a thorough explanation of serious indications that US intelligence agencies had declared her private mobile phone to be a target in their operations.

Merkel made it clear that, should these indications turn out to be true, she "unequivocally disapproves" of such methods and finds them "totally unacceptable," her spokesman Steffen Seibert said. "This would be a grave breach of trust," he added. "Such practices must immediately be put to a stop."

The unusually strong reaction from the Chancellery was prompted by SPIEGEL research. After the information was examined by the country's foreign intelligence agency, the Federal Intelligence Service (BND), and the Federal Office for Information Security, Berlin seems to have found their suspicions plausible enough to confront the US government.

During her conversation with Obama, Merkel expressed her expectation that "US authorities would provide an explanation about the possible extent of such surveillance practices, and thus answer questions that the German government already posed months ago," Seibert said.

"As a close ally of the United States of America, the German government expects a clear contractual agreement on the activities of the agencies and their cooperation," he added.

In response to the allegations, a spokeswoman for the US National Security Council told SPIEGEL: "The President assured the Chancellor that the United States is not monitoring and will not monitor the communications of Chancellor Merkel."

The spokeswoman did not wish to specify whether this statement applied to the past.

kla/SPIEGEL

Article...
  • For reasons of data protection and privacy, your IP address will only be stored if you are a registered user of Facebook and you are currently logged in to the service. For more detailed information, please click on the "i" symbol.
  • Post to other social networks

Comments
Discuss this issue with other readers!
8 total posts
Show all comments
    Page 1    
1. optional
izzer 10/23/2013
Another line in the sand.
2. Don't bother...
spon-facebook-10000125290 10/23/2013
Did she spoke with Obama over a phone line? She could as well just have spoken loudly and clear. The NSA would gladly make the connection. LOL
3.
humbahumba 10/23/2013
Welcome to Neuland, Chancellor! How you like it?
4. Merkel's phone
author 10/23/2013
If she has anything to hide then she should take care to hide it.
5. Opsec
3 Letter Agency 10/23/2013
Maybe Germany should use its own version of Android, secure hardware and stay off the Internet, unless you have your own, proprietary and secret encryption protocols. The US, for example, uses HAIPE, a variant of IPSec.
Show all comments
    Page 1    
Keep track of the news

Stay informed with our free news services:

All news from SPIEGEL International
Twitter | RSS
All news from World section
RSS

© SPIEGEL ONLINE 2013
All Rights Reserved
Reproduction only allowed with the permission of SPIEGELnet GmbH





European Partners
Presseurop

Politiken

Corriere della Sera

Temporary Teachers to Get Permanent Jobs

Renzi Ups the Pace


Facebook
Twitter