Mexico condemns alleged US hacking of Calderon email account

Such actions are unacceptable and violate international law, says government

It was reported that the email account of then Mexican president Felipe Calderón’s was accessed in 2010. Photograph: Alfredo Guerrero/Reuters

It was reported that the email account of then Mexican president Felipe Calderón’s was accessed in 2010. Photograph: Alfredo Guerrero/Reuters

Tue, Oct 22, 2013, 01:00

Mexico’s government condemned the US National Security Agency’s (NSA) alleged hacking of the email account of then-president Felipe Calderón in 2010, saying such actions are unacceptable and violate international law.

“In a relationship between neighbours and partners, there’s no room for the practices that allegedly took place,” the foreign ministry said yesterday, reiterating its call for US president Barack Obama’s administration to conduct an exhaustive investigation of NSA conduct.

Germany’s Spiegel reported yesterday that, in an operation called “Flatliquid”, the NSA used a server to gain access to Mr Calderón’s account and the Mexican presidential domain used by cabinet members for communications. Spiegel cited documents from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

The US gathers foreign intelligence of the type gathered by all nations, the NSA said yesterday, declining to comment on the specific case reported by Spiegel.

The US is reviewing how it gathers intelligence to balance concern for the security of citizens and allies against privacy concerns, the agency said.

Mr Calderón, who became a fellow at Harvard University’s John F Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts, after leaving office, wasn’t immediately available to comment.

The allegations follow a report on Brazilian television news magazine Fantastico last month, based on documents from Mr Snowden obtained by American journalist Glenn Greenwald, that the US accessed text messages sent by Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto last year, when he was a frontrunner in the election campaign, discussing potential cabinet picks.

Mr Peña Nieto took office in December after defeating the candidate from Mr Calderón’s National Action Party. – (Bloomberg)