Wikileaks released tonight a new cache of documents, showing that the United States National Security Administration bugged private meetings between major world leaders, including the United Nations Secretary General.
The N.S.A. bugged meetings between U.N.S.G. Ban Ki-Moon, German chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and several representatives from other major world governments, listening in on their conversations on climate change, global economics, and even “how to deal with Obama,” according to the new documents.
“Today we showed that U.N. Secretary General Ban KiMoon’s private meetings over how to save the planet from climate change were bugged by a country intent on protecting its largest oil companies,” said Wikileaks founder and editor Julian Assange, who is currently wanted by several world governments.
Assange continued, in a statement that came out in conjunction with the data dump: “We previously published Hillary Clinton’s orders that U.S. diplomats were to steal the Secretary General’s D.N.A. The U.S. government has signed agreements with the U.N. that it will not engage in such conduct against the U.N. — let alone its Secretary General. It will be interesting to see the U.N.’s reaction, because if the Secretary General can be targeted without consequence, then everyone from world leader to street sweeper is at risk.”
The documents include several intercepted conversations, including Netanyahu reaching out to Berlusconi for help in repairing his relationship with President Barack Obama, a conversation between world leaders on climate change negotiations in 2008, and a briefing on Japan’s goals for the 2008 G-8 summit.
Wikileaks’ latest release is particularly damning to the NSA, which once again has been caught crossing lines that they claimed they wouldn’t cross, including directly targeting the personal cell phones of the heads of refugee organization.
Wikileaks made separate posts detailing how the N.S.A. spied repeatedly on the U.N., Italy, and the E.U.. They also have a glossary on how to understand some of the released intercepts, which are predictably mired in government jargon and technical detail.
Read the full leaks here.