Brazilian authorities have canceled a trip to Washington that was designed to prepare for President Dilma Rousseff’s state visit next month in response to charges the U.S. spied on the South American nation.
Brazilian officials originally scheduled the trip for Sept. 7 to 11 to organize the details of Rousseff’s state visit, according to a government official who is close to the president and asked not to be named because the information isn’t official. He didn’t know whether Rousseff would cancel her trip in October.
Brazil’s government want the U.S. to respond this week to a report the National Security Agency used software to probe Rousseff’s communications with several aides, Foreign Minister Luiz Alberto Figueiredo told reporters in Brasilia Sept. 2. The spying, if true, would be “inadmissible and unacceptable,” he said.
“It’s a warning shot,” David Fleischer, a Brasilia-based political scientist, said in a phone interview. “If the U.S. doesn’t provide adequate answers they may cancel the visit altogether.”
The spying allegations were made Sept. 1 by American journalist Glenn Greenwald, who obtained secret documents from fugitive security analyst Edward Snowden in May, on Brazil’s most-watched TV news magazine, Fantastico.
The U.S. government will address Brazil’s request through diplomatic channels, a U.S. official with knowledge of the matter who wasn’t authorized to speak publicly said Sept. 2.