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Denmark accused of helping U.S. spy on top E.U. leaders
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron. Source: SAPO 24
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  • Denmark's secret service helped the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) spy on high-profile European Union leaders, according to Danish public broadcaster Danmarks Radio (DR)
  • The accusation comes in a DR report of a Danish Defence Intelligence Service (FE) investigation into the U.S. spying scandal that first came to light in 2013
  • United States whistleblower Edward Snowden brought the scandal to light, with the U.S. government allegedly accessing emails, calls and internet traffic of the E.U. leaders
  • The findings from the FE investigation claim that Denmark worked with the U.S. to spy on the leaders via subsea internet cables hosted in Denmark
  • The leaders include German Chancellor Angela Merkel and former German Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier
  • According to Edward Snowden, Joe Biden — who was vice-president of the U.S. at the time — was "deeply involved" in the spying scandal
  • Danish Defence Minister Trine Bramsen declined to comment on "speculation" about intelligence matters in the media, but she said the Danish government believes "systematic wiretapping" of allies is "unacceptable"

Denmark's secret service helped the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) spy on high-profile European Union leaders, according to Danish public broadcaster Danmarks Radio (DR).

The accusation comes in a DR report of a Danish Defence Intelligence Service (FE) investigation into the United States spying scandal that first came to light in 2013.

According to the report, the FE investigation found that the NSA worked with the FE to eavesdrop on leaders from Sweden, Norway, France and Germany using Danish information cables from 2012 to 2014. Denmark hosts several landing stations for subsea internet cables around Europe.

The leaders include German Chancellor Angela Merkel and former German Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier.

The spying scandal was first brought to light by the U.S. whistleblow Edward Snowden in 2013, with the U.S. Government allegedly accessing everything from emails to text messages to internet search history, as well as personal calls for the European leaders.

At the time, the White House gave no direct denial but assured Chancellor Merkel that her phone was not bugged at that time and would not be in the future.

The new DR report claims that Denmark helped the U.S. in its alleged spying scandal — information that was not previously known by the E.U. leaders.

"This is not acceptable between allies, and even less between allies and European partners," French President Emmanuel Macron said at a French-German summit held via video conference this week.

"What we are waiting for complete clarity [sic]. We requested that our Danish and American partners provide all the information on these revelations and on these past facts. We are awaiting these answers," he said.

Danish Defence Minister Trine Bramsen declined to comment on what she called "speculation" about intelligence matters in the media, but she said the Danish government believes "systematic wiretapping" of allies is "unacceptable".

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she was "reassured" by these comments by the Danish Defence Minister.

"Apart from establishing the facts, this is a good starting point to arrive at relations that are truly based in mutual trust," she said.

Biden "deeply involved"

While the alleged spying incident occurred under the Obama administration, President Joe Biden was vice-president at the time.

According to CIA-contractor-turned-whistleblow Edward Snowden, the then-Vice President was "deeply involved" in the spying scandal.

So far, the NSA and the Director of National Intelligence have made no comment on the latest findings from the Danish report.

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