Germany: Opposition attacks surveillance stance

Germany’s opposition has criticised the country’s top security official over efforts to secure information on US surveillance programmes, asserting he made little progress during a visit to Washington.

Interior minister Hans-Peter Friedrich (left) met attorney-general Eric Holder and vice-president Joe Biden on Friday. He said the meetings went well and pointed to the need to prevent attacks – telling ZDF television a US programme called PRISM searches in a “very targeted” way for terrorism-related information.

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Germans are sensitive to data protection concerns. The opposition is attacking Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government on the issue ahead of September elections, but there’s been little sign of any shift in polls.