Merkel dismayed, disappointed at spy scandal between Germany and US
6 July 2014, 16:53 -- The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, currently visiting China, looks 'dismayed and disappointed' in the wake of the latest spy scandal to break out in Germany earlier this week, the Spiegel Online newspaper reports, quoting a source within the German delegation in China.
The scandal may deal a serious blow to America's reputation in Germany, the source said.
Germany's Foreign Minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, has demanded explanations from Washington following the arrest of a suspected US spy in Germany.
If the suspicions are proved, then it's no trifling matter, he said during his visit to Mongolia on Sunday.
Steinmeier urged Washington to contribute to the speedy clarification of all circumstances surrounding the affair.
The German Interior Minister, Thomas de Maisiere, for his part told Germany's Bild newspaper he expected the White House to voice its position and come up with an assessment of the incident.
Very serious charges have been brought and the Attorney General's Office is investigating them, Maiziere said.
That's the only way to evaluate the scale of suspected spying and identify those involved in it, he said.
The incident highlights the need for effective counter-intelligence, the minister added.
German 'double agent' spied for CIA - media
A suspected 'double agent' detained in Germany has apparently spied for the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung newspaper reports citing its own source in Germany's BND intelligence service.
The 31-year-old BND employee, who was arrested on Wednesday, is believed to have stolen over 200 secret documents.
'All the evidence shows that he has spied for the Americans… that's not a friendly act,' the source told the newspaper.
The BND is looking into the potential impact of the incident on its further cooperation with US secret services.
The suspected spy was initially tasked with obtaining documents about a parliamentary probe into the US National Security Agency's massive electronic surveillance and phone-tapping activities in Germany following US whistleblower Edward Snowden's revelations.
The man insists he has managed to pass over just two 'insignificant' documents about the Bundestag commission's probe.
In 2012, he contacted the US embassy in Berlin via e-mail and offered spy services. A few weeks later, he met with a US agent in Salzburg and received 10,000 euros and a contact e-mail.
Two more meetings with agents followed, both in Austria, during one of which he was given 15,000 euros.
It appears that his ambitions meant more to him than money.
The suspect was exposed thanks to close cooperation between the BND and the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (counter-intelligence), the source said.
The incident has triggered a huge outcry in Germany. US Ambassador John Emerson was summoned to the German Foreign Minister to 'contribute to the clarification of circumstances' surrounding the affair.
Chancellor Angela Merkel was informed of the suspected double agent's arrest.
If it's proven that the BND agent spied for the US, then it's a blatant breach of friendship and trust between Germany and the US, German President Joachim Gauck said, commenting on the matter. If so, 'one really has to say that enough is enough,' he said.
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