Edward Snowden Leaks Australian and New Zealand Links to NSA Surveillance Program
Edward Snowden Leaks Australian and New Zealand Links to NSA Surveillance Program (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Edward Snowden leaked new documents accusing Australia and New Zealand of helping the National Security Agency in its massive surveillance program. The Age newspaper reports that Snowden identified four facilities in Australia that contribute to a “key American intelligence collection program.”

Snowden told Der Spiegel that the U.S., Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada were collaborating on “Five Eyes,” which is described as a major monitoring program to strengthen the sharing of surveillance information across their borders. He also implicated Israel in his leaks. He claims the NSA worked with Israel on the Stuxnet worm, which was used in a cyberattack on an Iranian nuclear facility.

Classified US National Security Agency maps leaked by Mr Snowden and published by US journalist Glenn Greenwald in the Brazilian O Globo newspaper reveal the locations of dozens of US and allied signals intelligence collection sites that contribute to interception of telecommunications and internet traffic worldwide.

The US Australian Joint Defence Facility at Pine Gap near Alice Springs and three Australian Signals Directorate facilities: the Shoal Bay Receiving Station near Darwin, the Australian Defence Satellite Communications Facility at Geraldton and the naval communications station HMAS Harman outside Canberra are among contributors to the NSA’s collection program codenamed X-Keyscore.

The New Zealand Government Security Communications Bureau facility at Waihopai near Blenheim also contributes to the program. X-Keyscore reportedly processes all signals before they are shunted off to various “production lines” that deal with specific issues and the exploitation of different data types for analysis – variously code-named Nucleon (voice), Pinwale (video), Mainway (call records) and Marina (internet records). US intelligence expert William Arkin describes X-Keyscore as a “national Intelligence collection mission system.”

This comes as Venezuela confirms receipt of Snowden’s asylum request. President Nicolas Maduro said the fugitive NSA leaker will “need to decide when he will fly here.” The Uruguayan government also offered Snowden asylum. RIA Novosti reports reports Uruguay’s First Lady, Senator Lucia Topolansky, said that her country would consider granting Snowden asylum. She also added,“Uruguay has traditionally been a country that grants asylum. I think that every country is free to shelter whomever it wants.”

The Guardian also released a second video of Glenn Greenwald’s interview with Edward Snowden.