Austria spy agency denies that it's being frozen out

August 20, 2018 - 8:36 am

BERLIN (AP) — The head of Austria's BVT spy agency is denying that there has been any significant reduction in cooperation with its foreign partners following a misconduct probe that sparked a political storm earlier this year.

Police raided the BVT on Feb. 28 in an operation reportedly triggered by the handover of blank North Korean passports to South Korea. Opposition parties claimed it was an attempt by the new right-wing government to purge domestic political enemies.

The Washington Post reported Friday that other Western services have frozen Austria out of sharing sensitive intelligence.

BVT director Peter Gridling said Monday "there is currently no appreciable reduction in cooperation with partner services." The agency said it is working to preserve or "in areas in which that seems necessary, restore" other intelligence services' confidence.

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