The Office for the Protection of the Constitution checks: Did officials in the Ministry of Economics spy on Moscow?

The Office for the Protection of the Constitution intervened because two senior officials at the Ministry of Economics took a conspicuously pro-Russian position.

The Office for the Protection of the Constitution checks: Did officials in the Ministry of Economics spy on Moscow?

The Office for the Protection of the Constitution intervened because two senior officials at the Ministry of Economics took a conspicuously pro-Russian position. According to media reports, the suspects, who work in a sensitive area of ​​energy policy, have "biographical anomalies".

According to a report, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) is investigating the suspicion that two senior officials from the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection (BMWK) may have spied for Russia. The people in question work in a particularly sensitive area that deals with the energy policy of the federal government, the "Zeit" reported in advance. A ministry spokeswoman said that the department could not comment on any individual cases.

The ministry has been in close contact with the Office for the Protection of the Constitution since the beginning of the legislative period, she added. It is clear that the work of the ministry has a special focus due to the responsibility for energy security and the high dependence on Russian energy imports. "We always follow up on all security-related information in close coordination with the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution and immediately implement any necessary steps, also in coordination with the Office for the Protection of the Constitution."

The "Zeit" wrote that the Ministry of Economics had handed over the case to the Office for the Protection of the Constitution after internal suspicions against those affected arose. The officials attracted attention because they had taken a conspicuously pro-Russian position in proposals on gas and energy policy. The Ministry for the Protection of the Constitution checked the CVs of the officials and found "biographical anomalies", the newspaper reported, citing unspecified sources in Berlin. In one case, it was about a study visit to Russia.

According to the report, the intelligence officers also followed up travel movements and checked whether flights were exclusively for official reasons or whether there were possibly “suspicious detours”. Private friendships and personal relationships with Russians were also checked. The newspaper wrote that there was talk of an "emotional closeness to Russia" that the officials obviously had. However, there was no solid evidence that it was actually one or more spies.

The ministry spokeswoman emphasized that the new management of the house had "completely turned the pro-Russian policy up until the change of government inside out". Strategic decisions have been shifted to management.