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Iran denies allegations of spying on German army

Following arrest of German-Afghan dual citizen, Iranian foreign ministry says enemies are aiming to ‘sour relations’ between Tehran and Europe

Afghan men watch German Army soldiers patroling near Char Darah, outside Kunduz, Afghanistan, September 20, 2011. (Anja Niedringhaus/AP)
Afghan men watch German Army soldiers patroling near Char Darah, outside Kunduz, Afghanistan, September 20, 2011. (Anja Niedringhaus/AP)

TEHRAN, Iran — Iran has dismissed allegations by German prosecutors that an army employee was spying for Tehran.

The semi-official ISNA news agency quoted Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi as saying that “enemies” were aiming to “sour relations” between Iran and Europe.

He appeared to be referring to the United States and Israel, which have pressed European nations to withdraw from Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

Germany’s federal prosecutor’s office said last week that a 50-year-old German-Afghan dual citizen was detained in the western Rhineland region. The German Defense Ministry confirmed the allegations but declined to give any further details.

German news site Spiegel Online reported that the suspect spied on the army for years and had access to highly classified material, including on German missions in Afghanistan.

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