Denmark helped US gather data on European leaders, says report

Denmark helped US gather data on European officials, says report
Angela Merkel was allegedly targeted by US intelligence. Source: Reuters
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Daily US Times: Denmark’s secret service helped the United States spy on European political leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel from 2012 to 2014, Danish media report.

The Defence Intelligence Service (FE) collaborated with the National Security Agency (NSA) of the US to gather information, according to a report by Danish broadcaster Danmarks Radio.

Intelligence was collected on other European leaders from Germany, Norway, Sweden and France, according to the report.

Similar allegations emerged in 2013 after secrets leaked by US whistleblower Edward Snowden alleged tapping of the German chancellor’s phone by the NSA.

The White House gave no outright denial when those allegations were made, but said Mrs Merkel’s phone was not being bugged at the time and would not be in future.

Germany is a close US ally.

In a new report shared with several European news agencies, the US National Security Agency (NSA) is said to have accessed text messages and the phone conversations of a number of prominent individuals in Europe by tapping in to Danish internet cables in co-operation with the FE.

The alleged set-up, codenamed “Operation Dunhammer”, allowed the NSA to obtain data using the telephone numbers of politicians as search parameters, Danmarks Radio reported.

The report follows an investigation by the broadcaster involving interviews with nine sources, all of whom were said to have had access to classified information held by the FE.

Along with Chancellor Merkel, then-German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and German opposition leader at the time Peer Steinbruck were also reportedly targeted.

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