Brazil: OK, We Spied on US, Too

Eyed rooms rented by US embassy in Brasília
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 5, 2013 7:21 AM CST
Brazil: OK, We Spied on US, Too
Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff leaves after attending the opening of a global conference on child labor in Brasilia, Brazil, Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013.   (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)

In September, Brazil's president decided to skip a planned visit to the US following reports of NSA spying; now Dilma Rousseff's country is admitting it's done some spying of its own—though within its own borders and not on the scale of the NSA. A report in the newspaper Folha de São Paulo yesterday said Brazil kept an eye on rooms the US embassy rented out in Brasília in 2003 and 2004, the Verge notes. Brazil also reportedly tracked Russian and Iranian officials in the country, following and photographing them, per the New York Times.

Brazil's government has confirmed the Folha report, which was based on documents from intelligence agency Abin: "The operations in question (took place) in accordance with Brazilian legislation pertaining to the protection of the national interest," officials said in a statement. The government also noted that the publication of such material would result in prosecution. An honorary consul to Russia who was targeted didn't sound too shocked: "Governments spy, what a surprise," says Fernando Sampaio. "I’ve long suspected that my phone line was tapped, and it probably still is." (More Brazil stories.)

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