German delegation in US over spying scandal
Iran Press TV
Wed Oct 30, 2013 4:4PM GMT
Germany has sent a high-profile delegation to Washington to demand explanation about spying by the US National Security Agency (NSA) on Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The delegation headed by Merkel's main foreign policy adviser, Christoph Heusgen, is scheduled to meet with the US intelligence representatives in the White House later on Wednesday.
German authorities have also announced that a second delegation led by the country's top intelligence officials will also visit Washington to discuss new reports about the NSA spying activities.
Merkel has demanded the United States enter a "no-spying" agreement with Germany and France by the end of 2013 amid recent revelations that the NSA spied on the two countries.
The Chancellor has also stressed that alleged espionage against Berlin and Paris, which are considered among closest allies of the US, should be stopped.
Meanwhile in Spain, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy held a speech on Wednesday in the parliament about recent reports that the United States spied on 60 million Spanish telephone calls in a single month last year.
Rajoy said the country is taking the spying reports seriously and reiterated that if confirmed, such activities are 'inappropriate and unacceptable between partners and friends.'
Spain has also warned that mutual trust between Madrid and Washington could be broken if the allegations prove to be true.
The country's public prosecutor opened on Tuesday a preliminary inquiry to determine if the reported spying activities amount to a crime on the part of the US government.
Concerns over US spying activities rose after Edward Snowden, a former NSA contractor, leaked two top secret US government spying programs under which the NSA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) are eavesdropping on millions of American and European phone records and the Internet data from major Internet companies such as Facebook, Yahoo, Google, Apple, and Microsoft.
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