France has called in the US ambassador to protest at allegations in Le Monde newspaper about large-scale spying on French citizens by the US National Security Agency, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said.
“I have immediately summoned the US ambassador and he will be received this morning at the Quai d’Orsay [the French Foreign Ministry],” Fabius told reporters at a European Union foreign ministers’ meeting in Luxembourg on Monday.
France and Mexico have demanded prompt explanations from Washington following fresh spying allegations leaked by former US security contractor Edward Snowden.
Reports in Le Monde and German weekly Der Spiegel have revealed that the National Security Agency secretly recorded tens of millions of phone calls in France and hacked into former Mexican President Felipe Calderon’s email account.
The spy agency taped 70.3 million phone calls in France over a 30-day period between December 10 and January 8 this year, Le Monde reported in its online version, citing documents from Snowden.
According to the paper, the NSA automatically picked up communications from certain phone numbers in France and recorded text messages under a programme code-named “US-985D”.
Le Monde said the documents gave grounds to believe that the NSA targeted not only people suspected of being involved in terrorism but also high-profile individuals from the world of business or politics.
US authorities declined comment to the French daily on the “classified” documents.
- France summons US ambassador over ‘spying’ (thedailyblogreport.wordpress.com)
- France summons US ambassador over fresh NSA spying claims (thehindu.com)
- France summons U.S. ambassador over spying report (reuters.com)