Allies increasingly concerned about intelligence cooperation with Germany's BND
Foreign partner services fear exposure from recent Russian infiltration of the German external intelligence service.
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Kahl, who has directed the BND since 2016 but is no longer in tune with his masters, is due to stay in the job for another few months, depending on events in Ukraine. In view of the planned budgets and its internal developments, the BND could quickly establish itself as a European leader.
With the issue of national security paramount in the build-up to the federal elections, how Germany's intelligence services will look and operate in the future is beginning to take centre stage. After being skimmed over for years in public debate, every party now has something to say on the matter.