US denies spying on the UN

The United Nations said it has received assurances from the US Government that its communications networks "are not and will not be monitored" by American intelligence agencies.

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Snowden revelations make UK less safe, says Cameron

Prime Minister David Cameron has said the Guardian has damaged UK security by publishing intelligence revelations based on leaks from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

David Cameron was asked whether he would praise the Guardian's recent intelligence revelations. Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire/Press Association Images

When asked by a Labour MP to whether he supported the paper for its coverage, he said: "I certainly wouldn't congratulate the Guardian newspaper."

"I can see what has been done here where information has been published about the work of our security and intelligence services, which quite frankly will make this country less safe."

He added: "We live in a free country so newspapers are free to publish what they want.

"We have not been heavy-handed and come in with injunctions and all the rest of it, but we do appeal to newspapers to use judgment and common sense and responsibility when they are making these decisions."

Cameron warns newspapers over Snowden leaks

Prime Minister David Cameron has indicated the government may take action to prevent newspapers from publishing leaks from the former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Prime Minister David Cameron has warned newspapers to act responsibly over the Edward Snowden leaks. Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire/Press Association Images

"If they [newspapers] don't demonstrate some social responsibility it will be very difficult for government to stand back and not to act," he said.

Mr Cameron said the Guardian newspaper had "gone on" to print damaging material after initially agreeing to destroy sensitive data related to the Snowden leaks.

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UK intelligence helps European allies, says Cameron

Prime Minister David Cameron has told the House of Commons that UK intelligence agencies are properly scrutinised and have helped European allies catch criminals.

Prime Minister David Cameron makes a statement on the EU Council in the House of Commons. Credit: PA/PA Wire/Press Association Images

In the wake of reports that the US had spied extensively on Spain, he defended the UK's strong intelligence relationship with the US but admitted that oversight needs to keep pace with surveillance techniques.

"As technology develops and the threats we face evolve, so we need to make sure that the scrutiny and the frameworks in place remain strong and effective," said Mr Cameron.

As well as helping catch UK criminals, he said intelligence "has also allowed us to warn our EU allies about terrorist plots aimed at their people, about cyber attacks on their business and infrastructure and about attempts in their own states to illegally traffic drugs, people, arms and money."

"We put in place over recent years under governments of both parties, I think, very good arrangements for governing our intelligence services and we should be proud of the work they do."

Spain summons US ambassador over spying claims

Spain today summoned the US ambassador to discuss alleged spying on Spanish citizens, saying Washington's alleged behaviour would be "unacceptable" if true.

"Spain has relayed to the United States the importance of preserving a climate of trust ... and its interest in understanding the full reach of practices that, if true, would be considered inappropriate and unacceptable between allies," the Spanish foreign ministry said in a statement.

US ambassador James Costos (L) leaves the Spanish foreign ministry today. Credit: REUTERS/Juan Medina

Madrid has also asked the United States to provide more data from the National Security Agency, it said.

The statement was issued after a meeting between Spain's Secretary of State for the European Union, Inigo Mendez de Vigo, and US Ambassador to Spain James Costos.

Report: US monitored 60m Spanish calls in one month

The US National Security Agency intercepted 60 million phone calls made in Spain during the space of a month, according to reports in Spanish newspapers El Pais and El Mundo.

According to documents provided by US whistleblower Edward Snowden, the NSA allegedly collected numbers, locations, durations of calls and serial numbers of phones between December 10 2012 and January 8 this year. The reports claim the data collected did not include the content of the calls.

Spy agency denies Obama discussed Merkel 'bugging'

US intelligence officials have denied German newspaper reports that Barack Obama was briefed by National Security Agency (NSA) chief Keith Alexander about Angela Merkel's phoned being tapped.

NSA spokeswoman Vanee Vines said:

[General] Alexander did not discuss with President Obama in 2010 an alleged foreign intelligence operation involving German Chancellor Merkel, nor has he ever discussed alleged operations involving Chancellor Merkel.

News reports claiming otherwise are not true.

– Vanee Vines

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Obama 'approved tapping Merkel's phone'

Barack Obama was told three years ago that the National Security Agency was monitoring Angela Merkel's communications and allowed it to continue, a German newspaper has reported.

Barack Obama has been dragged into the row over the tapping of world leaders' phones. Credit: REUTERS/Grigory Dukor

Bild am Sonntag claimed the US President allowed intelligence officials to listen to calls from the German Chancellor’s mobile phone after he was briefed by NSA chief Keith Alexander in 2010.

However, an NSA spokeswoman said Alexander never discussed the alleged bugging of Merkel's phone with Obama.

Obama apologised to Merkel for US phone bugging

President Barack Obama apologised to German Chancellor Angela Merkel for US spies bugging her calls, German magazine Der Spiegel reported.

Angela Merkel and Barack Obama pictured together last month at the G20 summit in Russia Credit: Reuters

Merkel reportedly called the US leader last week to seek clarification over bugging reports and was assured by the President that she was not "currently" being monitored.

It has since been revealed that Merkel's calls may have been monitored by the US since 2002.

Report: US tracked Merkel's phone for over a decade

The US may have bugged Angela Merkel's phone for more than 10 years, according to German newspaper Der Spiegel.

The news report also said President Obama told the German leader he would have stopped it happening had he known about it.

Spying reports have strained relations between Angela Merkel and Barack Obama. Credit: Andy Rain/PA Wire

Der Spiegel said Merkel's mobile telephone had been listed by the NSA's Special Collection Service (SCS) since 2002 - marked as "GE Chancellor Merkel" - and was still on the list weeks before Obama visited Berlin in June.

In an SCS document cited by the magazine, the agency said it had a "not legally registered spying branch" in the US embassy in Berlin, the exposure of which would lead to "grave damage for the relations of the United States to another government".

White House: Cameron phone calls 'not monitored'

The PM's communications "have not, are not and will not" be monitored, said the US Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

David Cameron's phone has been not tapped by US intelligence agencies, the White House said amid claims that other European leaders' communications were monitored.

White House National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden told the BBC: "I can confirm that his communications have not, are not and will not be monitored by the US."

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