Germany Arrests EU Parliament Aide On China Espionage Charges

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by Tyler Durden
Wednesday, Apr 24, 2024 - 06:45 AM

A staffer who worked for a high profile German member of European Parliament for years has been arrested on charges of spying for Chinese intelligence, Germany’s federal prosecutor’s office announced on Tuesday.

Identified only as Jian G., he had reportedly been a staff member for German MEP Maximilian Krah going back to 2019. Krah is with what mainstream media commonly dubs the "far-right" AfD (Alternative for Germany party).

"In January 2024 the accused repeatedly shared information about negotiations and decisions in the European Parliament with his intelligence service employer," the prosecutors office said.

European Parliament, Getty Images

The suspect has also been accused of spying on and monitoring Chinese opposition communities inside Germany. Beijing has long been suspected in the West, including the US, of keeping close tabs on the political leanings and activism of expat enclaves via a network of spies connected to consulates.

German interior minister Nancy Faeser subsequently announced on X, "If it is confirmed that there was espionage for Chinese intelligence services from within the European Parliament, then that would be an attack on European democracy from within. Whoever employs such a person carries responsibility."

The investigation into "Jian G", who was detained Monday, was led by German domestic intelligence services. Recent days and weeks have seen other arrests in Europe of suspected Chinese spies, including a couple in the UK in recent days.

On Tuesday China's foreign minister reacted by denouncing the "hype" surrounding such cases, describing it as more anti-China propaganda aimed at political manipulation and to ratchet pressure on Beijing.

According to Politico, "The bombshell arrest, which rocks the AfD while it polls in second place nationally, sparked calls from one top European lawmaker for a tougher crackdown on Chinese and Russian infiltrators attempting to influence EU democracy."