Snowden documents recently revealed by the German magazine Der Spiegel show that the National Security Agency (NSA) and Britain’s GCHQ included more than 100 foreign leaders in a surveillance database called Nymrod, according to a report in The Intercept.
The top secret documents confirm that the NSA conducted much broader spying on German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other German interests than was previously believed. In addition to tapping the German leader’s cell phone, the NSA obtained a court order allowing it greater leeway to spy on Germany. The Intercept notes the documents quote NSA as saying it uses Nymrod, to “find information relating to targets that would otherwise be tough to track down.”
The Intercept also cites a response from a National Security Council spokesperson claiming the Obama administration is “not monitoring and will not monitor the communications of Chancellor Merkel.”