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German anti-spying deal with US being discussed, officials say.

Berlin, Shawwal 6, 1434, Aug 13, 2013, SPA -- Germany and the United States are discussing an unprecedented anti-spying agreement, a German cabinet minister said, but the US stopped short Tuesday of confirming the alleged talks, dpa reported.

Ronald Pofalla, who holds ministerial rank as chief of staff of the German chancellery, announced Monday that initial contacts had been held between German intelligence officials and the US National Security Agency (NSA).

He revealed the plans after a lengthy meeting with opposition legislators, who have been critical of the response by Chancellor Angela Merkel's government to alleged US internet data collection.

Pofalla said full talks would get under way this month on what he called a unique opportunity to set standards for the future work of Western intelligence services.

In Washington, National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden told dpa the US had "been consulting closely with the German government to hear their concerns and ensure that our close cooperation on counterterrorism and intelligence remains as effective as possible." However, she did not directly address Pofalla's claims.

SPA 19:12 LOCAL TIME 16:12 GMT

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Publication:Saudi Press Agency (SPA)
Date:Aug 13, 2013
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