The German government on Wednesday declined to comment on a media report that US intelligence agencies have shut off technical assistance to German troops in Iraq over Germany’s inquiry into NSA spying.
BERLIN (Sputnik) — On Wednesday, the German tabloid Bild cited US intelligence sources as saying that Washington had put intelligence cooperation on hold pending a German parliamentary inquiry into the NSA spying agency’s activities in Bavaria, where it is suspected to have snooped on EU companies and governments using a German listening post.
Asked whether reports of the freeze in relations were true, government spokesman Steffen Seibert told reporters at a press briefing in Berlin that, "This question is related to the specifics of cooperation between intelligence services… only a responsible parliamentary body can answer it." "Consultations continue," he added.
US intelligence circles expressed concern that their assets could fall into the hands of a German parliamentary commission currently probing NSA activities in the country, the source told Bild.
Germany has been training Kurdish militias in northern Iraq since 2014, when the Islamic State militant group seized large swathes of land there and laid siege to the region’s capital Irbil. The United States supplies German forces with surveillance technology to boost the security of its troops.
The row over the United States spying on European targets erupted in mid-April after German media was alerted to the NSA's continued spying in the country, on German and other EU governments, in 2015. It followed the 2013 disclosure by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, who revealed that the agency had been gathering metadata on European targets for years.
The fact of registration and authorization of users on Sputnik websites via users’ account or accounts on social networks indicates acceptance of these rules.
Users are obliged abide by national and international laws. Users are obliged to speak respectfully to the other participants in the discussion, readers and individuals referenced in the posts.
The websites’ administration has the right to delete comments made in languages other than the language of the majority of the websites’ content.
In all language versions of the sputniknews.com websites any comments posted can be edited.
A user comment will be deleted if it:
does not correspond with the subject of the post;
promotes hatred and discrimination on racial, ethnic, sexual, religious or social basis or violates the rights of minorities;
violates the rights of minors, causing them harm in any form, including moral damage;
contains ideas of extremist nature or calls for other illegal activities;
contains insults, threats to other users, individuals or specific organizations, denigrates dignity or undermines business reputations;
contains insults or messages expressing disrespect to Sputnik;
violates privacy, distributes personal data of third parties without their consent or violates privacy of correspondence;
describes or references scenes of violence, cruelty to animals;
contains information about methods of suicide, incites to commit suicide;
pursues commercial objectives, contains improper advertising, unlawful political advertisement or links to other online resources containing such information;
promotes products or services of third parties without proper authorization;
contains offensive language or profanity and its derivatives, as well as hints of the use of lexical items falling within this definition;
contains spam, advertises spamming, mass mailing services and promotes get-rich-quick schemes;
promotes the use of narcotic / psychotropic substances, provides information on their production and use;
contains links to viruses and malicious software;
is part of an organized action involving large volumes of comments with identical or similar content ("flash mob");
“floods” the discussion thread with a large number of incoherent or irrelevant messages;
violates etiquette, exhibiting any form of aggressive, humiliating or abusive behavior ("trolling");
doesn’t follow standard rules of the English language, for example, is typed fully or mostly in capital letters or isn’t broken down into sentences.
The administration has the right to block a user’s access to the page or delete a user’s account without notice if the user is in violation of these rules or if behavior indicating said violation is detected.