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    US Says Germany Remains Crucial Partner Despite Espionage Scandal

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    Germany remains vital US partner on international issues, US National Security Council spokesperson Ned Price told Sputnik on Thursday following reports of halted intelligence cooperation between the two countries in Iraq.

    WASHINGTON, June 4 (Sputnik) — “We work closely with Germany on all matters of international concern, and the Germans are indispensable partners,” Price stated.

    On Wednesday, media reported that US intelligence has suspended technical assistance to German troops in Iraq out of fear Berlin could use American technology to investigate US surveillance activities in Germany.

    Germany has supported since 2014 Kurdish militias in northern Iraq against extremists in the region, including the Islamic State. German soldiers have provided training for fighters while US surveillance technology is used to aid the German troop’s security.

    The United States has not replied to a technical cooperation inquiry by Berlin, the German tabloid Bild reported, citing a US intelligence source.

    US intelligence officials have expressed concern their technology could fall into the hands of a Bundestag commission currently investigating US surveillance activity on German territory, the source said.

    A scandal erupted in mid-April after German media uncovered internal intelligence investigation documents detailing the United States spying on high-ranking European officials and corporations.


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