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Canada 'spied' on Brazil's Energy Ministry

Intelligence documents leaked by Edward Snowden show Canada guilty of spying on Brazil's industrial affairs.

Last Modified: 07 Oct 2013 12:02
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Brazil's Mining and Energy Minister Edilson Loba described the developments as "serious" [Reuters]

Canada spied on communications at Brazil's Mining and Energy Ministry, according to Canadian intelligence documents
revealed by Brazil's Globo television channel.

The report, aired on Sunday night on Globo television, said the findings were based on documents leaked by former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden.

According to Globo, Snowden obtained the documents at a June 2012 meeting of intelligence analysts from the United States, Canada, Britain, Australia and New Zealand, a group said to be called the "Five Eyes".

A Canadian software spying program named Olympia "mapped" the ministry's phone communications and computers with the goal of studying contacts "made with other groups, within and outside of Brazil, aside from Petrobras," Globo said.

Petrobras is the Brazil's state-run energy giant.

One of the documents shows a registry of calls from the ministry to other countries, including to the Quito, Ecuador-based Latin American Energy Organization (OLADE) and the Brazilian embassy in Peru.

'Serious'

Responding to the report, Mining and Energy Minister Edilson Lobao described the developments as "serious".

There are many Canadian businesses interested in doing business in our country. If that is where the interest in spying comes from, to help certain business interests, I cannot say.

Brazil's Mining and Energy Minister Edilson Lobao

"There are many Canadian businesses interested in doing business in our country. If that is where the interest in spying comes from, to help certain business interests, I cannot say," Lobao said.

The revelations is the latest evidence
 that Brazil has been a target for US, British and now Canadian spy agencies.

Earlier disclosures by Snowden that the United States spied on the same ministry, as well as on President Dilma Rousseff and her aides, have strained US-Brazilian ties.

The report said the so-called metadata of phone calls and emails from and to the Brazilian ministry were targeted by Canada's Communications Security Establishment.

The report did not indicate if emails were read or phone calls listened to. 

American journalist Glenn Greenwald worked with Globo on its report.

Greenwald broke the first stories about the NSA's
global spy program focusing on internet traffic and phone calls.

Thirty-year-old Snowden is wanted by the United States after revealing details of a massive NSA electronic surveillance program.

Snowden spent more than a month in transit in Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport before slipping into Russia where he was granted asylum. 

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Source:
Agencies
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