Ger­many an­nounced Thurs­day that it had or­dered the se­nior Amer­i­can in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cial in the coun­try ex­pelled, re­tal­i­at­ing for ap­par­ent Amer­i­can re­cruit­ment of spies here.


“The rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the U.S. in­tel­li­gence ser­vices at the Unit­ed States Em­bassy has been asked to leave Ger­many,” a gov­ern­ment spokesman, Stef­fen Seib­ert, said in a state­ment.

“The re­quest oc­curred against the back­drop of the on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion by fed­er­al pros­e­cu­tors as well as the ques­tions that were posed months ago about the ac­tiv­i­ties of U.S. in­tel­li­gence agen­cies in Ger­many,” he said. “The gov­ern­ment takes the mat­ter very se­ri­ous­ly.”


Mr. Seib­ert said Ger­many con­tin­ued to seek “close and trust­ing” co­op­er­a­tion with its West­ern part­ners, “es­pe­cial­ly the Unit­ed States.”

Clemens Bin­ninger, a mem­ber of Chan­cel­lor An­gela Merkel’s par­ty, said the move was “a po­lit­i­cal re­ac­tion of the gov­ern­ment to the lack of will­ing­ness of U.S. au­thor­i­ties to help clear up any ques­tions aris­ing in the past year” in con­nec­tion with Amer­i­can sur­veil­lance of Ger­many and its lead­ers.

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Ger­man of­fi­cials have been frus­trat­ed in their ef­forts to re­ceive clar­i­fi­ca­tion from Wash­ing­ton over al­le­ga­tions of spy­ing that be­gan last year when it was re­vealed that the Na­tion­al Se­cu­ri­ty Agency had been mon­i­tor­ing the

chan­cel­lor’s cell­phone. Al­though Pres­i­dent Oba­ma has of­fered as­sur­ances that it will no longer hap­pen, rev­e­la­tions last week that a mem­ber of the Ger­man se­cret ser­vices had been spy­ing for the Unit­ed States sparked a fresh round of out­rage.

On Wednes­day, the po­lice searched the Berlin of­fice and apart­ment of a man sus­pect­ed of be­ing a spy, fed­er­al pros­e­cu­tors said. They de­clined to give fur­ther in­for­ma­tion, but the Ger­man news me­dia re­port­ed that the sus­pect worked for the De­fense Min­istry. A min­istry spokesman con­firmed that it was in­volved in an in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

* NYT, 11 July 2014, Alison Smale reported from Berlin, and Melissa Eddy from Paris. (Text)