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Merkel denied access to own NSA file

The Local · 9 Apr 2014, 10:42

Published: 09 Apr 2014 10:42 GMT+02:00

Germany's interior ministry reportedly approached the United States’ National Security Agency (NSA) last October to ask for the file’s content, amid revelations the NSA had been tapping the chancellor’s mobile phone.

But in a written response to parliamentary questions from the Green Party, the German government said: "The United States has not revealed the relevant information to the German government."

Green Party foreign policy spokesman Omid Nouripour wanted to know whether the chancellor had requested access to the documents produced by the NSA while they were spying on her phone, whether the US government has revealed details about the transcripts and whether Merkel was considering pushing for the files to be destroyed.  

The German government did not respond to the question of whether it had asked for the files to be destroyed, but it had received no answer for its request to see the file, the Sächsische Zeitung reported on Wednesday.

And in an interview with Spiegel magazine this week interior minister Thomas de Maizière said the information provided by the United States "is to this day insufficient”.

Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden revealed in October that the NSA had been tapping Merkel's mobile phone.

"If two-thirds of that which Edward Snowden claims or that which is attributed to him as a source were to be true, then I would come to the conclusion that the United States is operating without limits," de Maizière said in the interview.

In another development, the chairman of the committee investigating NSA spying in Germany resigned on Wednesday. Clemens Binninger said disagreements among committee members were behind his decision. He will be replaced by Christian Democrat politician Patrick Sensburg. 

Binninger, a conservative politician, had been under pressure to call Snowden as a witness to the committee but had rejected the idea.

SEE ALSO: German secret services move into new HQ

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