Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Germany considers having Snowden testify to inquiry

BERLIN — The German government will examine how the former National Security Agency contractor Edward J. Snowden could testify to a parliamentary inquiry into U.S. intelligence activities in Germany, the interior minister said Wednesday, amid rising demands not only to thank Snowden for his disclosures but also to grant him full political asylum.

At the same time, a senior German intelligence official raised concerns, which he said were shared by European colleagues, that the White House and Congress had failed to understand the depth of the rift over U.S. intelligence activities. The fury built with the disclosure two weeks ago of eavesdropping on Chancellor Angela Merkel's cellphone and subsequent reports that the monitoring and other espionage activities were carried out from the U.S. Embassy in Berlin.

The statements come as Germany is clearly seeking leverage for a binding agreement with Washington to end mutual spying and put intelligence sharing on a new basis. The situation in both capitals is fluid, and the pressures evident: Germans see a vulnerable President Barack Obama in trouble on several fronts in Washington, while in Berlin Merkel is negotiating a new coalition government with Social Democrats who Americans fear may pull her further into the camp of Washington's critics.

The interior minister, Hans-Peter Friedrich, a member of Merkel's conservative bloc, ruled out asylum but said that "we must now discuss under what circumstances and how it is possible, that Mr. Snowden is heard from, and by whom, in Moscow."

Increasingly, Snowden's actions are tearing at the elite in Germany, even tempting veteran Atlanticists to recall the Cold War tussle between Washington and Moscow for the sympathies of the citizens of Europe's biggest country. The temperature of the debate is alarming Berlin, where senior officials are not sure that the White House or Congress understand what a rift the "NSA affair," as it is known here, has brought about.

Germany considers having Snowden testify to inquiry 11/06/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 6, 2013 11:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, New York Times.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Video: Rays Souza on that oh-so-bad dive, and reaction from Twins fans

    Blogs

    What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking when he made that oh-so-bad dive for a ball in the seventh inning Friday? Well, we'll let him tell you ...

  2. What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking on that comically bad dive?

    Blogs

    What could Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. been thinking in the seventh inning Friday when he dove for a ball and came up yards short?

    Actually, he insisted after all the laughing, teasing and standing ovation from the Twins fans was done, it was a matter of self-preservation.

  3. Judge tosses life sentences for D.C. sniper Lee Boyd Malvo

    Nation

    McLEAN, Va. — A federal judge on Friday tossed out two life sentences for one of Virginia's most notorious criminals, sniper Lee Boyd Malvo, and ordered Virginia courts to hold new sentencing hearings.

    A federal judge has tossed out two life sentences for D.C. sniper shooter Lee Boyd Malvo. [Associated Press, 2004]
  4. Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Carter's national security adviser, dies

    News

    Zbigniew Brzezinski, the hawkish strategic theorist who was national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter in the tumultuous years of the Iran hostage crisis and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in the late 1970s, died on Friday at a hospital in Virginia. He was 89.

    Zbigniew Brzezinski, former national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, participates in Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Capitol Hill on March 5, 2009, in Washington, D.C. [Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images]
  5. USF eliminated by UCF in AAC baseball; Florida, FSU, Miami win

    Colleges

    CLEARWATER — Roughly 16 hours after a ninth-inning collapse against East Carolina in the American Athletic Conference's double-elimination baseball tournament, USF returned to Spectrum Field presumably set for a reboot.

    It simply got booted instead.

    ’NOLES win: Tyler Holton gets a hug from Drew Carlton after his strong eight innings help Florida State beat Louisville.