U.S., German views on spying differ but still firm allies: Merkel

German Chancellor Merkel smiles during a news conference in Berlin

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel smiles during a news conference in Berlin, July 18, 2014. REUTERS/Thomas …

BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday that Germany and the United States had differing views on data protection after new allegations of U.S. spying emerged this month but added that the partnership with America was nonetheless very important.

"We have different opinions on an area of cooperation between our services and also on the issue of security and protection of personal data, but that doesn't change the fact that the U.S. is our most important ally," she said at a news conference in Berlin.

(Reporting by Stephen Brown and Annika Breidthardt; Writing by Michelle Martin)

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