Berlin fires the head of its cybersecurity agency

Berlin has taken a strong decision, a question of security. Arne Schönbohm, the head of Germany’s cybersecurity agency, was dismissed from his post with immediate effect on Tuesday, the Interior Ministry announced. In question, possible links of the official with Russia, revealed by the media. The department says a review of these allegations is ongoing. “Pending the conclusion of this examination, the presumption of innocence naturally applies to the person of Arne Schönbohm”, adds the ministry.

Arne Schönbohm had been in the hot seat since several press organs had echoed his closeness to a cybersecurity consulting association, itself suspected of contacts with Russian intelligence services. “The well-known and widely discussed allegations in the media have permanently damaged the necessary public confidence in the neutrality and impartiality” of the president of Germany’s top cybersecurity authority, the Interior Ministry said.

“This is all the more true in the current crisis situation regarding Russian hybrid warfare,” he added. This dismissal comes at a time when Germany is on the alert against possible acts of sabotage by Moscow. After the leaks in the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines built to transport Russian gas to Europe, this country suffered a large-scale railway sabotage on October 8, for which some have mentioned the Russian track in the context of the war in Ukraine.

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