July 10, 2014 by Matthias Gebauer – Spiegel.de
In what amounts to a diplomatic earthquake, Berlin has asked the country's top CIA official to leave Germany. The measure comes in response to the second allegation in a week of a German government employee spying for the US.
Marking its most vocal response yet to the United States for alleged spying and a tough new tone, the government in Berlin asked Washington's top CIA official in Germany to leave the country on Thursday. The news followed a meeting of the Parliamentary Control Panel (PKGR) in the federal parliament responsible for scrutiny of intelligence services.
Panel Chairperson Clemens Binninger said the request had been "a reaction to unsuccessful cooperation in the pursuit of clarification." The panel convened a special session on Thursday to discuss two cases of suspected spying by German government employees on behalf of the United States that have emerged during the past week.
The first case involved an employee with Germany's foreign intelligence service. Last Friday, federal prosecutors in Germany said they had arrested the employee of the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND) foreign intelligence agency on suspicion he had acted as a spy against Germany by selling secrets to US intelligence agents, including documents pertaining to the special parliamentary committee investigating spying by the NSA in Germany.
And this Wednesday, the Federal Prosecutor's Office in Karlsruhe confirmed it is investigating a second case, based on suspicions that an employee with the Defense Ministry in Berlin may also have passed secrets on to the US.
The revelations of the past week show that, in addition to conducting signals intelligence to gather information on Germany, US intelligence agencies are also using human intelligence. They strongly suggest that US services in Germany continue to collect large amounts of intelligence, and all this despite the outrage over the NSA scandal and news in October 2013 that the Americans had been spying on Chancellor Merkel's mobile phone.