German Official Suppressed Intel Report on China to Protect Business Ties: Report

A senior German government official suppressed a 2018 intelligence report on China’s influence in Germany for fear of damaging business relationships between the two countries, Axios reported on Tuesday.



a person and a dog walking on a sidewalk: A woman walks a dog at the Kurfuerstendamm shopping street in Berlin, Germany, April 23, 2020.


© Annegret Hilse/Reuters
A woman walks a dog at the Kurfuerstendamm shopping street in Berlin, Germany, April 23, 2020.

The report detailed China’s growing attempts to influence German society, business, and politics, two U.S. intelligence officials said. However, a high-ranking official moved to prevent the report from being disseminated throughout the German government. Only small number of senior officials have read the report, including Chancellor Angela Merkel.

“As a matter of principle, the German government does not comment on matters concerning intelligence findings or activities of the intelligence services,” a government spokesperson told Axios.

The news comes after Chancellor Merkel in September refused to ban Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei from operating on 5G networks in the country, bucking U.S.

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