Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy has denounced the phone-tapping conducted by magistrates investigating him.
He likened the actions to those of the “Stasi” police of the former East Germany.
A letter by Sarkozy, who is widely expected to stand for election again in 2017, has been published Friday’s edition of French newspaper Le Figaro.
The “Stasi” comparison has been met by sharp criticism by French President Francois Hollande and several other politicians.
Socialist Party leader Harlem Désir said: “I’m shocked to see the former President of the Republic compare, dare to compare, our country, his country, to old East Germany during the time of the ‘Iron Curtain’.”