BERLIN — WikiLeaks on Wednesday published a new list of German phone numbers it claims showed the U.S. National Security Agency targeted phones belonging to Chancellor Angela Merkel’s close aides and chancellery offices for surveillance.
Wednesday’s publication came a week after WikiLeaks released a list of numbers it said showed the NSA targeted officials at various other German ministries and elsewhere. That rekindled concerns over U.S. surveillance in Germany after reports two years ago that Merkel’s own cellphone was targeted.
Merkel’s chief of staff last week asked the U.S. ambassador to a meeting and told him that German law must be followed.
There was no immediate comment from the German government on the latest publication.
The list includes a cellphone number attributed to Ronald Pofalla, Merkel’s chief of staff from 2009-13; a landline number that appears to belong to the leader of Merkel’s parliamentary caucus; various other connections at Merkel’s office; and a cellphone number for the chancellor that WikiLeaks says was used until 2013.
It was unclear when exactly the partially redacted list of 56 German phone numbers dates from and it wasn’t immediately possible to confirm the accuracy of that and other documents released by WikiLeaks.
Those documents, WikiLeaks said, are NSA reports based on interceptions — including one from 2009 that details Merkel’s views on the international financial crisis and another from 2011 summarizing advisers’ views on plans for the eurozone’s rescue fund.
According to the secret-spilling site, the list of phone numbers was updated for more than a decade after 2002 and a “close study” of it shows it evolved from an earlier target list dating back into the 1990s.
July 8, 2015
Find this story at 8 July 2015