> ANSA English > News

News report claims US spied on Italian leadership

Repubblica-Espresso investigation says US embassy eavesdropping

06 December, 18:02
News report claims US spied on Italian leadership (ANSA) - Rome, December 6 - The United States spied on Italian leadership communications via a special undercover unit that enjoyed diplomatic immunity, according to an exclusive report published Friday by newspaper La Repubblica and Espresso magazine.

La Repubblica said in its front page article that its information was based on documents provided by former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor and whistle-blower Edward Snowden, and published pictures of a cubical structure on the roof of the US embassy in Rome that it asked British intelligence journalist Duncan Campbell to assess. Campbell has specialized in security and intelligence issues since the 1970s, and in 1988 revealed the ECHELON surveillance programme of broad monitoring of satellite communications for partner countries Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. According to La Repubblica, Campbell concluded that the structure on top of the US embassy in Rome was a secret listening post "to hide the collection of electronic intelligence with many hidden antenna with the capacity to listen to GSM, GPRS, 3G and CDMA network phones, as well as government and police communications channels, and to support special activities of the CIA, like targeted wire-tapping".