Obama, Merkel Plan Meeting on US Spying

As EU officials gather to discuss reports
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 4, 2013 6:40 AM CDT
Obama, Merkel Plan Meeting on US Spying
German Chancellor Angela Merkel listens to questions from journalists during a media conference at an EU summit in Brussels on Friday, June 28, 2013.   (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

President Obama and Angela Merkel have discussed US spying allegations by phone, the White House says, and they're organizing a meeting between US and German security officials on the issue. "The president assured the chancellor that the United States takes seriously the concerns of our European allies and partners," the White House notes, per Reuters. Germany plans to send envoys to Washington; a meeting could come within days. EU and US officials are also set to meet as soon as July 8.

Merkel and Obama both continue to support a new transatlantic trade deal, the White House adds; talks on the matter are set to begin next week. Though France has suggested delaying the talks until after spying claims are addressed, the European Commission says the discussions will go forward on schedule. Meanwhile, European Union ambassadors are reviewing the surveillance issue amongst themselves at a meeting today in Brussels, CNN reports. They'll also talk about PRISM and the possibility of creating a US-EU working group. (Read more Angela Merkel stories.)

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