The United States admits to be supporting double agents through a CIA spying program
The German authorities are investigating a second case of spying originating in the United States government. The discovery of a second individual working for the American spying agency follows the arrest last week of a German citizen accused of working 31 years as a double agent for the secret service of his country and for the U.S..
German federal prosecutors and the police department confirmed Wednesday that records have been found in a private home and in offices in Berlin after which show that a second individual has been spying for the United States. This time it points to an employee of the Ministry of Defence as shown during investigations that are still underway.
As noted by Frankfurter Allgemeine, this implies that the investigation affects not only the ministry but also the army and military intelligence services, which would have uncovered the second case of espionage. Information matching public television reprots as well as the digital edition of the newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, indicate that the operation took place in the capital and its vicinity.
Federal prosecutors confirmed records, but refused to provide details on the grounds that the investigation remains open, while Chancellor Angela Merkel declined to comment in a press release.
However, Merkel said that the control bodies of the German Parliament will be informed about the matter, without implying in turn a confirmation of the news. When asked by the media, the Chancellor did confirm without elaborating that in recent days there have been “conversations” with the United States about the recent findings.
The German government spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said to the Frankfurter Allgemeine that the evidence must be confirmed before deciding possible actions, but stressed that the case is “very serious.” Moreover, he warned that there are “profound differences” with the U.S. on these espionage cases involving “trust” between governments.
According to reports in the German press, the suspect has been spying for the U.S. intelligence. The Ministry of Defence has not clarified whether it is a soldier or a civilian, but stressed that the matter is taken “very seriously“. It is expected that this Wednesday the suspect, who has not been arrested yet, appears to testify in front of the prosecution.
This news follows the arrest last week of a German agent working in the Central Intelligence Agency office in Pullach who was in contact with the CIA for the last two years. The suspect allegedly leaked documents to Washington which revealed the works of a parliamentary committee that is currently investigating the scandal of massive spying by the National Security Agency (NSA).
The U.S. ambassador in Berlin, John B. Emerson, was summoned last week by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. According to German media, he appeared before the department again on Tuesday to address the issue, which threatens to further strain relations between the two countries.
Merkel was informed of the arrest the same day she had a telephone conversation with the U.S. president, Barack Obama. According to the New York Times, Obama had not been informed of the arrest of the spy before he began his conversation with Merkel, who chose not to address the issue. The Foreign Ministry described it as a “very serious” incident and the Social Democrats, partners in the grand coalition government, demanded immediate explanations.