Zee Media Bureau/Himanshu Kapoor
Berlin: German intelligence has said that Chancellor Angela Merkel’s mobile phone could have been bugged by the US for four years.
According to a report, the Chancellor’s phone number was listed on documents leaked by former National Security Agency operative Edward Snowden.
Merkel was using a Nokia phone from October 2009 whose number was listed on the documents, however, the new phone that she started using in July this year was not listed. The intelligence services are assuming that the new phone’s security has not been compromised.
Merkel on Wednesday confronted US President Barack Obama, after the German government said it had information that the United States might have monitored her cell phone. Merkel`s spokesman Steffen Seibert said that she told Obama that, “she unmistakably disapproves of and views such practices as completely unacceptable, if the indications are authenticated.”
However, the White House responded that Merkel`s mobile is not being tapped.
The two-day Brussels summit between European Union leaders will be overshadowed by the accusations of alleged espionage by the US on its European allies. The summit is supposed to focus on the digital economy and economic and social policy issues, as well as concerns about EU migration.
Earlier in the day, US ambassador to Germany, John B. Emerson, was summoned to a meeting with German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle.
Germany said that it will make its position clear only after the meeting. Also this week the French newspaper Le Monde reported claims that over 70 million phone calls in France were intercepted by the US National Security Agency over a 30-day period.
President François Hollande of France also called the White House to confront Obama with reports that the NSA was targeting the private phone calls and text messages of millions of French people.
Merkel today insisted that there must be no spying among friends and said that the trust must be restored following allegations that American intelligence targeted her mobile phone.