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Germany Ends Cold War-Era Spying Pacts With U.S., Britain

Europeans, including protesters in France, have expressed anger since the revelations of U.S. surveillance leaked by former contract worker Edward Snowden.
Germany says it has canceled surveillance agreements dating from the Cold War era with the United States and Britain in the wake of revelations about U.S. online spying.

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said the move was "necessary and proper" amid the debate on data and privacy protection sparked by fugitive U.S. leaker Edward Snowden, who has claimed that Germany was complicit in the U.S. intelligence-gathering operations.

According to media reports, the agreement dating back to 1968-69 allowed Washington and London to request surveillance data from Germany's intelligence services when it related to the safety of their troops stationed in Germany.

The move appeared largely symbolic, designed to show that the German government was taking action to stop unwarranted surveillance directed against its citizens without actually jeopardizing relations with Washington and London.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP