After German Chancellor Angela Merkel accused the NSA of wiretapping hers and millions of other German’s digital communication, the German government has asked the top CIA representative in the country to leave at once.
According to the Guardian, the CIA representative was responsible for coordinating secret service activities in Germany, and this representative was also the contact for two German officials recently arrested on charges of spying for the U.S.
“The representative of the U.S. intelligence services at the Embassy of the United States of America,” says German government spokesman Steffen Seibert according to the Washington Post, “has been requested to leave Germany.”
This all comes a year after whistleblower Edward Snowden leaked the evidence showing the NSA was wiretapping foreign citizen’s communications.
The German government has been frustrated, according to the New York Times, with the U.S. for not explaining their actions concerning the wiretapping as well as over assurances from President Obama that the government will no longer spy on German citizens despite the two arrested German officials.
The White House, earlier this week, said the relationship between the U.S. and German governments is one built on respect, but the German media has likened the actions taken by the U.S. government to those of “pariah states like North Korea or Iran.”
White House spokesman Josh Earnest would not comment on the state of U.S. intelligence. “Any sort of comment on any reported intelligence acts,” Earnest says according to the LA Times, “would put at risk U.S. assets, U.S. personnel and the United States national security.”
Catlin Hayden, a spokeswoman for the NSA, said, “Our security and intelligence relationship with Germany is a very important one, and it keeps Germans and Americans safe… and we will continue to be in touch with the German government in appropriate channels.”