BRUSSELS, Sept 17 (KUNA) -- The head of Belgium's state security service,
Alain Winants, said in an interview published Monday, that Brussels currently
sees more spy activity than almost any other city in the world.
"We are not speaking in the dozens, we are speaking in the hundreds,
several hundreds" of foreign intelligence officers and agents in Brussels, he
told the Brussels-based website Euobserver in what is said to be his first
interview with the international media.
"In Belgium, espionage, Russian espionage and from other countries, like
the Chinese, but also others,is at the same level as the Cold War ... We are
a country with an enormous concentration of diplomats, businessmen,
international institutions - NATO, European institutions. So for an
intelligence officer, for a spy, this is a kindergarten. It's the place to be,
" Winants was quoted saying.
He also named Iran as a culprit. It is a joke in intelligence circles that
Iranian spies mostly spy on their own ambassadors.
When asked if EU-friendly countries, such as Israel or the US, do it, he
said "It would be naive to think that only countries like Russia, China, Iran
"One of the things that other countries' intelligence services are
interested in is the energy policy of the EU institutions," he noted.
He said spies usually pretend to be diplomats, journalists, lobbyists,
businessmen or students. (end)
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