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Germany Doesn't Want U.S. Intelligence Help With Its Election, U.S. Official Says

Germany has made it clear it doesn't want "any hint of U.S. involvement in any way" in September's federal election, a senior U.S. intelligence official said.
Image: Angela Merkel
In this photo taken with reflection in windows of the visitors tribune, German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivers a speech on Europe at the German Parliament Bundestag on March 9, 2017 in Berlin. FileMarkus Schreiber / AP

German intelligence officials have told their American counterparts that they don't need support in monitoring or safeguarding Germany's elections in the fall, a senior U.S. intelligence official told NBC News on Tuesday.

The U.S. official, who asked not to be identified but has direct knowledge of the communications, said Germany doesn't want "any hint of U.S. involvement in any way."

"They communicated, very clearly: 'We got this. We don't need your help,'" the official said.

The official said that Germany has its own robust counter-hacking and intelligence-gathering network and that there isn't much trust in the Trump administration — especially when it comes to elections.

Related: Who Are the Russian-Backed Hackers Attacking Political System?

German Chancellor Angela Merkel made it clear over the weekend that the rift between German and the United States is widening under Donald Trump's presidency.

"All I can say is that we Europeans must really take our destiny into our own hands," Merkel said at a campaign event at a beer tent in Bavaria. "The times in which we can fully count on others are somewhat over, as I have experienced in the past few days."

Related: Germany’s Merkel Signals Deepening Rift With U.S. Under Trump

The Social Democratic Party's Martin Schulz, Merkel's main challenger in the September elections, told German broadcaster ZDF: "We have to make clear to the United States that they are isolated."