Merkel ally says German chancellor 'not amused' by latest US spy cases

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BERLIN — A close ally of Angela Merkel says the German Chancellor is "not amused" by the latest reported cases of U.S. spying in Germany.

Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, who was previously Germany's top security official, says Germany relies strongly on the United States in the fight against terrorism.

But he says "that doesn't mean that the Americans are allowed to recruit third-rate people here."

His comments broadcast Wednesday night by Phoenix television follow the arrest of one man and an investigation against another on suspicion of working for a foreign intelligence agency. German media have reported that the men are suspected of passing secrets to the U.S.

Schaeuble said that if the claims turn out to be true, "that's so stupid that one can only cry at the foolishness of it."

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