Germany admits it gave Iraq intelligence to Washington

24th February 2006, Comments 0 comments

24 February 2006, BERLIN - German intelligence officials provided the United States with information about developments in Iraq during the US-led invasion to which the Berlin government was officially opposed, according to a government dossier.

24 February 2006

BERLIN - German intelligence officials provided the United States with information about developments in Iraq during the US-led invasion to which the Berlin government was officially opposed, according to a government dossier.

But the report on the activities of BND foreign intelligence agents in Iraq dismisses claims they assisted the US in its "strategic aerial offensive" against the forces of then-president Saddam Hussein.

Media reports in Germany and the United States had claimed two BND agents who remained in Baghdad after the March 2003 invasion had provided information that helped US forces target their bombs.

The report said the agents relayed information to BND headquarters in Pullach near Munich where it was evaluated and in some cases passed on to the US.

Some of the data concerned military and troop activities and the location of Iraqi special forces, often ascertained with the help of GPS equipment.

None of this served to support the "strategic aerial war offensive" because no information concerning immediate air or ground operations was passed on, the report said.

The original dossier was 300 pages, but the version made public late Thursday was only 90 pages because of cuts made for security reasons and data protection requirements.

Norbert Roettgen, the Christian Democrat head of a parliamentary intelligence review panel who saw the original report, said earlier this week he was satisfied that the BND agents did not assist in the preparation of military actions by the US.

The then government of chancellor Gerhard Schroeder was officially opposed to the war in Iraq. Schroeder's coordinator with the secret service at the time was Frank-Walter Steinmeier, current foreign minister.

The three opposition parties, the Free Democrats (FDP), Greens and Left Party, have all suggested a parliamentary inquiry into the allegations, but the FDP said they would not make a formal decision on the matter until next month.

DPA

Subject: German news

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