German oppn assails minister over US surveillance

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Associated Press

Posted on July 13, 2013 at 7:03 AM

BERLIN (AP) — Germany's opposition is criticizing the country's top security official over efforts to secure information on U.S. surveillance programs, asserting he made little progress during a visit to Washington.

Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich met Attorney General Eric Holder and Vice President Joe Biden Friday. He said the meetings went well and pointed to the need to prevent attacks — telling ZDF television a U.S. program called PRISM searches in a "very targeted" way for terrorism-related information.

Germans are sensitive to data protection concerns. The opposition is attacking Chancellor Angela Merkel's government on the issue ahead of September elections, but there's been little sign of any shift in polls.

Senior opposition Social Democrat Thomas Oppermann wrote on Twitter Saturday that Friedrich was "coldly rebuffed by the U.S. and thanked them for it."

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