German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called President Obama to demand an explanation after hearing that her mobile phone may have been tapped by US intelligence services.
The confrontation came after German magazine Der Spiegel reported that the NSA had been spying on the Chancellor for years, an allegation which the German intelligence services found plausible.
It came after confirmation from German security services that allegations in Der Spiegel magazine of NSA spying were plausible.
Washington was quick to limit the damage.
“I can tell you that the President assured the Chancellor that the United Sates is not monitoring and will not monitor the communications of the Chancellor,” announced White House Press Secretary Jay Carney at a press conference, “the US greatly values our close cooperation with Germany on a broad range of shared security challenges.”
However, he omitted to say whether any electronic eavesdropping had taken place in the past.
Merkel is the latest head of state to fall foul of the surveillance revelations. Both Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff and Mexican leader Peña Nieto were allegedly victims of the NSA spying scandal.
Following revelations earlier this week that the US was spying on French citizens’ data, President Obama said he would review American intelligence gathering.