China says it is definitely “unacceptable and intolerable” that the US is spying on the leaders of its European allies and others around the world, stressing that Washington should be brought to justice.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said Thursday that the US has been a champion of spying on other countries, including its own allies, and that the world deserves a responsible explanation.
“The US spying on its allies is unacceptable, let alone the bold action of tapping the whole world which is utterly intolerable. The United States has always been recognized as the world’s number one secret theft with various methods including simulating signals of base stations to tap into and steal data from cellphones, maneuvering mobile apps, hacking into cloud servers, and even tapping undersea fiber-optic cables,” Wang said.
His comments came after Danish public broadcaster Danmarks Radio (DR) in an investigative report said on Sunday that the infamous US spy network, the National Security Agency (NSA), has colluded with Denmark’s military intelligence unit, FE, to snoop on senior European politicians, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The report added that FE had given the NSA open internet access to spy on SMS text messages, telephone calls, and internet traffic, including searches, chats and messaging services of European politicians.
Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron, as well as many other leaders, are currently pressing Copenhagen for immediate explanation. They have stressed that such behaviors are absolutely unacceptable.
The US “has also bugged around 100 embassies and consulates in other countries to steal secrecies. The recent media disclosure of the United States’ tapping on its European allies is just the tip of the iceberg of the country’s huge global secret-leaking network, and the US owes the international community an explanation,” Wang further said.
The Chinese foreign ministry spokesman also lambasted Washington for its bullying and hypocritical nature.
“For a long time, the US relies on its technological advantages to indiscriminately and unscrupulously conduct large-scale wiretapping and eavesdropping; while on the other hand, it wantonly oppresses legally-operating non-US companies under the pretext of the so-called national security. Such double standards have fully exposed its hypocrisy and hegemonic bullying nature,” Wang said.
The US “should immediately stop the evil behaviors of conducting massive and indiscriminate tapping and spying on other countries, and put an end to the malicious actions to crack down on non-US companies in name of the stretched concept of national security. The United States should give back the world justice,” Wang added.
He also said that the so-called Clean Network Program put forward by the US was only a movement to cement its monopoly on high technology field, paving the way for its “secret theft actions.”
Norway summons US embassy’s top official
On Thursday, the Norwegian foreign ministry said it had summoned the US charge d’affaires, Richard Riley, the top official of the American embassy in the Scandinavian country, to lodge an official protest.
Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg confirmed that the US embassy in Oslo was “summoned” over the issue.
“The defense ministry held a meeting with the US embassy in Oslo today where we made it clear that spying on allies is unacceptable and unnecessary,” Norway’s Defense Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen separately said on Twitter.
The internal probe at the Danish Defense Intelligence Service was first launched in 2014 following concerns over leaks exposed by former NSA officer Edward Snowden the previous year revealing the spy agency’s massive surveillance operations across the US and worldwide.
The US spying effort was going on during and after the 2013 Snowden affair, which erupted when he unveiled thousands of classified documents exposing the gigantic US surveillance operations established following the highly suspicious September 11, 2001 terror attacks in New York and near Washington DC.
Featured image: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin