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Mexico to summon U.S. ambassador over spying allegations

By Catherine E. Shoichet, CNN
October 23, 2013 -- Updated 1303 GMT (2103 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Mexico calls reported U.S. spying an abuse of trust
  • Mexico's foreign minister demands swift investigation
  • His comments follow Der Spiegel report on fresh allegations of U.S. spying
  • It's the latest sign of international fallout over documents leaked by Edward Snowden

Read this story in Spanish at CNNMexico.com

(CNN) -- Mexico's foreign minister says he's summoning the U.S. Ambassador following fresh reports of spying.

"Shared security and responsibility between respectful neighbors cannot be constructed by violating the law and violating trust," Mexican Foreign Minister Jose Antonio Meade said Tuesday.

"Mexico is convinced that the practice of espionage committed constitute a violation of norms, an abuse of the trust built between partnering countries and does not honor the historic friendship between our nations," he added.

Speaking in Geneva, Meade said he would summon U.S. Ambassador Anthony Wayne upon his return to Mexico.

France angry over US surveillance tactics
John Walker ran a father and son spy ring, passing classified material to the Soviet Union from 1967 to 1985. Walker was a Navy communication specialist with financial difficulties when he walked into the Soviet Embassy and sold a piece of cyphering equipment. Navy and Defense officials said that Walker enabled the Soviet Union to unscramble military communications and pinpoint the location of U.S. submarines at all times. As part of his plea deal, prosecutors promised leniency for Walker's son Michael Walker, a former Navy seaman. Click through the gallery to see other high-profile leak scandals the United States has seen over the years. John Walker ran a father and son spy ring, passing classified material to the Soviet Union from 1967 to 1985. Walker was a Navy communication specialist with financial difficulties when he walked into the Soviet Embassy and sold a piece of cyphering equipment. Navy and Defense officials said that Walker enabled the Soviet Union to unscramble military communications and pinpoint the location of U.S. submarines at all times. As part of his plea deal, prosecutors promised leniency for Walker's son Michael Walker, a former Navy seaman. Click through the gallery to see other high-profile leak scandals the United States has seen over the years.
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His comments come days after Germany's Der Spiegel news magazine published allegations that the U.S. National Security Agency "systematically" eavesdropped on the Mexican government and hacked the public e-mail account of former Mexican President Felipe Calderon.

Der Spiegel named former NSA contractor Edward Snowden as the source of its information.

On Sunday, Mexico's government said such spying would be unacceptable, illegitimate and against the law.

Meade demanded a swift investigation, noting that U.S. President Barack Obama had vowed to investigate when earlier allegations of spying surfaced in September.

"Mexico finally reiterates its confidence in the conviction of President Obama that international law is not an empty promise," Meade said. "We are sure that the promise of an investigation made with Mexico is not either."

Mexico will also conduct its own investigation, Interior Minister Miguel Angel Osorio Chong told reporters.

The new allegations drew a sharp response from Calderon in a series of Twitter posts on Monday.

"More than personal, it is an assault on the institutions of the country, given that it was done when I was the president," Calderon said. "I will be following the steps the Foreign Ministry takes to demand explanations from the United States and the corresponding account of responsibility."

A senior U.S. State Department official told CNN the Mexican government reached out about the report and that the two governments will be discussing it via diplomatic channels.

The NSA said it would not "comment publicly on every specific alleged intelligence activity, and as a matter of policy we have made clear that the United States gathers foreign intelligence of the type gathered by all nations.

U.S. spy chief says reports of NSA logging French phone calls are false

"As the President said in his speech at the U.N. General Assembly, we've begun to review the way that we gather intelligence, so that we properly balance the legitimate security concerns of our citizens and allies with the privacy concerns that all people share," the agency added.

The statements were the latest sign of international fallout over apparent Snowden leaks.

Mexico summoned Wayne in September after a report alleging the U.S. government had spied on Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto during last year's presidential campaign.

Separately, the United States and Brazil agreed in September to postpone Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff's state visit to Washington over reports the United States spied on her communications. That case of alleged NSA surveillance was also linked to apparent Snowden leaks.

And on Monday, the U.S. ambassador to France met with French diplomats over allegations the NSA intercepted more than 70 million phone calls in the European nation over a 30-day period. Those allegations were reported by France's Le Monde newspaper, citing documents leaked by Snowden.

Snowden has admitted to leaking documents about U.S. surveillance programs and faces charges of espionage and theft of government property in the United States. He is living in Russia after receiving asylum.

CNN has not independently verified the reports citing leaked documents by Snowden.

CNN's Dana Ford contributed to this report.

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