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Germany expels CIA Berlin chief over NSA spying
Germany is expelling the CIA chief in Berlin in retaliation for the latest espionage scandals 'in addition to existing issues'.
Two suspected US agents have been exposed in the past week, prompting criticism from German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The expulsion comes shortly after the alleged US agents were  unmasked, suspected of acting as double agents within the state  security apparatus, and passing secrets to US intelligence  contacts.
The move was “a reaction to persistent failure to work  together in efforts towards clarification,” according to the  chief of the Parliamentary Control Panel.
The two new cases, which came in quick succession of one another,  increase the strain on already tense relations after the  revelations made about the extent of global NSA espionage in  June, 2013.

Merkel criticized the spy’s presence in Germany, stating that  when common sense is switched on, “spying is ultimately a  waste of force,” reported Der Spiegle.
She added that in 21st century intelligence work, there should be  a strong focus on the essentials rather than that which is just  technically possible – to the point that “one can’t see the  wood because of all the trees,” Merkel said.
“The order arose against the backdrop of the ongoing  investigation by the General Prosecutor's Office, in addition to  existing issues in recent months surrounding the actions of US  intelligence agencies in Germany,” said the document.

The US stated on Thursday that it was imperative that the two  nations continued to cooperate on intelligence and security  matters.
"We have seen these reports and have no comment on a purported  intelligence matter. However, our security and intelligence  relationship with Germany is a very important one and it keeps  Germans and Americans safe," White House spokeswoman Caitlin  Hayden told Reuters.
"It is essential that cooperation continue in all areas and  we will continue to be in touch with the German government in  appropriate channels,"she added.

A 31-year-old intelligence officer was arrested last week, and further reports on Wednesday indicated that a German soldier was also  being investigated.
According to German newspaper Die Welt, the soldier was said to  have made “intensive contacts” with alleged US intelligence  officials, and had been under surveillance by Military  Intelligence (MAD) for some time.

The US has not yet denied allegations that the German  intelligence official was passing classified information to the  NSA.
In a report published on Monday, two unidentified government  officials told Reuters of the CIA’s involvement in the  operation, which led to the recruitment of the 31-year-old  suspected spy, who is now in the custody of German officials.
The man was alleged to have passed the Americans 218 secret  documents in exchange for € 25,000 ($34,100), and having been a  double agent for them for two years through meetings with his  contact in Austria and passing on secret documents on a USB  stick.
Last October, Merkel was enraged to learn she was allegedly on  the NSA’s tapping list since 2002. The Chancellor called the  alleged spying, which became known thanks to Edward Snowden’s  leaks, "unacceptable."

A German parliamentary committee has since been holding hearings  on the NSA’s spying activities in Germany.
“It’s very embarrassing for the political leaders in Germany  to have Americans spying on the Chancellor, or Americans spying  on the Defense Ministry, or Americans spying on the German  Intelligence service, or on the parliamentary investigations –   it’s a big embarrassment for the German political elite,”   German investigative journalist John Goetz told RT.
"Germany is under a lot of pressure...not to do something.  From German standards, they did quite a lot..." he said.   

“The German and American security systems are so interwoven  you can’t even separate them – they’re basically the same  infrastructure, the same architecture of security. So, if Germany  was to say they don’t want to, it’s very hard for them not to  because there are so many institutions that are interwoven.”

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