By Erik Kirschbaum BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's top public prosecutor will look into accusations that the country's BND foreign intelligence agency violated laws by helping the United States spy on officials and firms in Europe, including Airbus group, the federal prosecutors office said. A spokesman for the prosecutors office confirmed weekend media reports that an investigation had been launched as opposition politicians demanded more information about the unfolding scandal from Chancellor Angela Merkel's government. "A preliminary investigation has been started," the spokesman said. In a related development, federal prosecutor Harald Range himself will be questioned by a parliamentary committee looking into the affair in Berlin on Wednesday. Der Spiegel magazine said the BND helped the U.S. National Security Agency over at least 10 years, embarrassing Germany and upsetting many in a country where surveillance is a sensitive topic due to abuses by the Nazis and the East German Stasi. The magazine also reported that in 2013 the BND ordered staff to delete 12,000 internet "selectors" -- IP addresses, email addresses and phone numbers of German government officials -- that it had been tracking for the NSA. Opposition members of parliament for the Greens and Left party have requested more information from Merkel's government about the BND's assistance to the NSA. German media said there were indications EU governments and agencies, especially France, were the targets of the BND's spying for the NSA. "This appears to be reaching a criminal dimension," Christian Stroebele, a senior Greens member of parliament, told the Rheinische Post newspaper. Airbus Group AIR.PA said on Thursday it planned to complain to the German authorities over reports that the country's foreign intelligence agency had helped the United States to spy on it and other European firms. At the heart of the controversy is the scope of cooperation between the BND and NSA that began in 2002 after the September 11, 2001 attacks -- and how long the Chancellor's office was aware of BND's activities on behalf of the NSA. It is an especially touchy issue in Germany because Merkel and many Germans reacted strongly in 2013 to reports that the NSA had long been tapping Merkel's cell phone. "Spying among friends is not at all acceptable," she said at the time. (Writing by Erik Kirschbaum; additional reporting by Matthias Sobolewski; editing by Ralph Boulton)
There's one line her critics agreed with — but probably not in the way she was hoping.
- The Telegraph
When my five-year-old daughter cries at night for her father, I repeat what I have told her for almost a year: “Daddy has gone on one of his adventures. I don’t know what’s happened, but I’m doing everything I can to get the answers. I love you, I love Daddy and I miss him.” Every time the phone rings, my heart leaps with the thought: It’s him.
Kate Middleton’s Latest Photo Might Be Subtly Shading Meghan Markle’s Highly Publicized Complaint Against Her
Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle were never besties. That has been determined over and over again, especially as the family feud festered. Not all sisters-in-law are meant to be BFFS, but it’s easy to see that they have very different personalities that just didn’t mesh well. That’s why Kate’s appearance on Wednesday, Feb. 8 to […]
- Yahoo Sports
A woman reportedly filed a complaint against Irvin after an encounter in a hotel lobby Sunday.
We Finally Know the Exact Reason Why the Royal Family Has Reportedly Chosen Not to Address Any of Prince Harry's Bombshell Allegations
After Prince Harry’s memoir, Spare, came out on Jan. 10, royal watchers were waiting for King Charles III and the rest of the palace to react. Instead of speaking out, the press was met with a wall of silence — and that, apparently, was a very pointed strategy chosen by the royal family. Valentine Low, […]
- Miami Herald
Police in Florida staked out at a home on a hunch something was wrong, and it was.
- Entertainment Weekly
Whoopi Goldberg reacts as Joy Behar says she was 'happy' to be fired from The View : 'All my friends had left'
Goldberg feigned a quivering lip after Behar said she was excited to take a hiatus from the show because she had no friends left on the set: "Really? All your friends left?"
- The Hill
Parents are calling for action after video captured the brutal beating of a teen at a high school in California.
DeSantis says he won't fight with Trump over Truth Social photos with high schoolers: 'I don't spend my time trying to smear other Republicans'
"I spend my time delivering results for the people of Florida and fighting against Joe Biden," DeSantis said during a press conference on Wednesday.
Britney Spears Took Some Bikini Pics In A London Hotel Room, And She Looks Like She's Having The Best Time
Britney Spears is back to sharing bikini pics, and she seems to be having great fun!
- Fox News
Valerie Bertinelli is sharing how much weight she's lost after cutting out one thing for a whole month.
The Royal Family is Reportedly Offering These Generous Incentives to Entice Prince Harry & Meghan Markle Into Attending King Charles III’s Coronation
After several years of tension and private disagreements followed by one tell-all interview with Oprah, an unprecedented exclusive series with Netflix, and a bombshell memoir, King Charles is reportedly doing everything he can to sweeten the deal for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to attend his coronation in May. According to The Mail on Sunday, […]
- Touchdown Wire
NFL Network has pulled Michael Irvin from its Super Bowl 57 coverage
- Fox News
Speechwriting experts say Biden made a good faith effort at promoting bipartisanship in his State of the Union, but did not confront the China threat as aggressively as he should have.
- USA TODAY Sports
Nonprofit executive paid more than $200,000 per year also worked for the Wilson family office, raising legal questions, experts said.
The truth-challenged GOP congressman appeared to get into a brief confrontation ahead of President Joe Biden's address to Congress.
White Witch? Cruella? Pennywise? The Republican congresswoman's critics have some thoughts.
In case you’ve missed it: Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and Lauren Boebert (R-Co.), who don’t seem to realize that they are two sides of the same terrible coin, have been very publicly at war with each other for some time now. And that war continued apace on Tuesday with Boebert once again mocking Greene—this time for carrying a large white balloon around the U.S. Capitol all day ahead of Biden’s State of the Union address to symbolize the so-called “Chinese spy balloon” that the military
- LA Times
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar told Shaquille O'Neal he was on his side despite concerns the former Lakers captain never gave O'Neal advice during his career.
- Country Living
Sarah McLachlan's Super Bowl ad for Busch Light is being called a "masterpiece." Watch it here.