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France calls in U.S. ambassador over NSA spying allegations on French citizens

Written on:October 21, 2013
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Monday, October 21, 2013 -France called in the U.S. ambassador on Monday to protest at allegations in Le Monde newspaper about large-scale spying on French citizens by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said.

The Leaked documents revealed the US spy agency NSA records millions of phone calls and monitors politicians and high-profile business people.

“I have immediately summoned the U.S. ambassador and he will be received this morning at the Quai d’Orsay (the French Foreign Ministry),” Fabius told reporters at a European Union foreign ministers’ meeting in Luxembourg.

Laurent Fabius, France's foreign minister .

Laurent Fabius, France’s foreign minister .

The US National Security Agency (NSA) has been intercepting French telephone calls “on a massive scale”, according to a report published Monday in Le Monde. The report was co-authored by American journalist Glenn Greenwald, and is based on classified documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. According to Le Monde, the NSA recorded millions of telephone calls placed by French citizens over a 30-day period last year, including some placed by people with no connections to terrorist organizations.

Citing the report on French publication Le Monde, Interior Minister Manuel Valls spoke out on national television against US spy practices.

“The revelations on Le Monde are shocking and demand adequate explanations from the American authorities in the coming hours,” said Valls on television channel Europe 1. He went on to say that it is totally unacceptable for an allied country to spy on France.

Greenwald, who left his position at The Guardian last week to launch a new venture with eBay founder Pierre Omidyar, has been working with Le Monde since August and will contribute to the newspaper’s coverage of NSA surveillance going forward.

Yesterday, news about NSA’s hacking into the Mexican president’s public email account was trending in major news sites and in social media.

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