MEXICO CITY: Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said on Wednesday (Thursday in Manila) he would try to talk this week with United States (US) counterpart Barack Obama about reported spying on his e-mails, warning it would be illegal.
The two leaders will come face to face at the Group of 20 meeting in Russia on Thursday (Friday in Manila), four days after it was reported that the National Security Agency (NSA) snooped on the online activities of Brazilian and Mexican leaders.
The new claims of spying in Latin America came two months after allegations of widespread US electronic espionage in the region that infuriated allies and rivals alike.
“If it is proven that an action took place, with the use of espionage means, this is clearly not permitted and it is outside the law,” Pena Nieto told reporters during a layover in Canada before arriving in Saint Petersburg.
“There will surely be space at the G20 for some sort of meeting, either casual or informal, with the US president to make our position very clear,” he said, recalling that his government has asked the United States to investigate the matter.
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is already in Russia for the G20 talks and she is scheduled to visit Obama in Washington next month, though Foreign Minister Luiz Alberto Figueiredo refused to say this week whether the trip would be affected.
The Mexican and Brazilian governments summoned the US ambassador to their respective countries this week to seek explanations about the latest espionage claims.
In Brasilia, Communications Minister Paulo Bernardo said the answers given by the United States since the first allegations emerged in July have been “false.”
US journalist Glenn Greenwald, who has access to secret documents leaked by fugitive former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, told Brazil’s Globo television this week that the agency spied on Rousseff’s Internet searches and Pena Nieto’s emails before his election last year.