France charges two ex-agents for spying for a ′foreign power′ | Europe| News and current affairs from around the continent | DW | 25.05.2018
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France charges two ex-agents for spying for a 'foreign power'

Two former French spies have been charged with passing secrets to a "foreign power," France's Defense Ministry said. The former members of DSGE intelligence agency allegedly handed over secrets while still in service.

France's Defense Ministry said in a statement on Thursday that the two men were being investigated over suspicion of "treason through delivering information to a foreign power" and "compromising the secrecy of national defense."

Defense Minister Florence Parly, who oversees the country's General Directorate for External Security (DGSE), said Friday she could not identify which "foreign power" recruited the French agents.

The "double agent" act was reportedly discovered in December and the unnamed spies were indicted the same month.

"France has partners but we live in a dangerous world, and, unfortunately, these types of things can happen," Parly told CNews television. "The fact that we sounded the alert is proof of our vigilance."

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French Defense Minister Florence Parly (Getty Images/AFP/L. Marin)

French Defense Minister Florence Parly

Suspected Chinese involvement

French media said China could be the suspected foreign power the spies handed over information to.

One of the indicted French spies was reportedly posted in Beijing.

Another former French intelligence officer also faces charges of inciting treason, a judicial source told Reuters news agency.

The revelations come just weeks after US authorities said they had indicted a former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operative for China spying.

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shs/sms  (AFP, AP, Reuters)

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