Iran government spying on ex-pat dissidents, says Germany

Manfred Murck

Manfred Murck

A German intelligence official has said Iranian government agents are actively spying on Iranian dissidents living in Germany. Speaking to the Panorama program on Germany’s ARD state-owned television station, Manfred Murck, deputy director of the Hamburg branch of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), Germany’s primary domestic intelligence service, said his department is aware of Iranian intelligence activity targeting Iranians living in Germany. “We know that the Iranian (secret) service has its people circulating in demonstrations. We have evidence that people are being filmed, that the services want to identify people”, said Murck. He also claimed that Iranian government agents are calling those they have identified as dissidents, in an effort to intimidate them by issuing threats against them and their relatives living in Iran. Panorama contacted representatives of the Iranian embassy in Berlin, who denied the allegations. However, Murck’s accusation is the first direct claim from a government intelligence official that Iran is engaging in systematic monitoring of dissident Iranians living outside its borders.

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

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