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Brazil admits spying on U.S., Russian, Iranian diplomats

BRASILIA, Brazil, Nov. 4 (UPI) -- Brazil said Monday its intelligence agency has spied on U.S., Russian and Iranian diplomats and has had counter-intelligence operations in place for a decade.

Brazil's Institutional Security Cabinet, which oversees the country's intelligence agency, known as ABIN, said in a statement, "ABIN develops intelligence activities for the defense of the democratic rule of law, society and national sovereignty, in strict observance of constitutional principles and rights and individual guarantees."

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The Cabinet added ABIN's intelligence operations "obeyed the Brazilian legislation for the protection of national interests."

The statement, first reported by The New York Times, comes at a time when Germany, France and other allies -- including Brazil -- have lambasted the Obama administration for National Security Agency intelligence operations targeting those countries.

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