Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador accused the Pentagon of spying on Mexico’s government, vowing to safeguard classified military information to protect its national security after a spate of documents leaked in U.S. media.
During his daily press briefing on Tuesday, Obrador said the Pentagon targeted Mexico several days after the leaked information exposed alleged tensions between Mexico’s Navy and the Army, according to The Washington Post.
“We are going to take care of the information from Semar and Sedena because we are being spied on by the Pentagon, and many media outlets are leaking information that the [Drug Enforcement Agency] gives them,” Obrador said without providing evidence.
Obrador added, according to Bloomberg, that Mexico would guard information “for security because we feel that they are trying to violate our sovereignty in an interventionist plan.”
Pentagon officials have not immediately responded to Obrador’s comments.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said over the weekend that dozens of leaks of classified intelligence documents from the Pentagon had not affected U.S. cooperation with allies.
The Pentagon leaks have set off a series of foreign policy controversies that the Biden administration is attempting to tamp down, from accusations of U.S. spying on allied nations to concerns among allies about the security of intelligence shared with the U.S.
Blinken and other Biden administration diplomats have attempted to reassure allies about the security of U.S. intelligence despite hundreds of pages of leaked intelligence.
“We have engaged with our allies and partners since these leaks came out, and we have done so at high levels, and we have made clear our commitment to safeguarding intelligence and our commitment to our security partnerships,” said Blinken Saturday when asked about concerns he may have heard from U.S. allies over the leaks.
Obrador said on Monday that the U.S. intelligence in the leaks was an “abusive, overbearing intrusion that should not be accepted under any circumstance,” adding that he did not plan to rebuke the U.S., but would at some point discuss “conditions for collaborative work,” Reuters reported.
The FBI arrested 21-year-old Jack Teixeira, a Massachusetts Air National Guard member, on Thursday and charged him with violating the Espionage Act for posting dozens of transcriptions and photos of classified documents to a private Discord server. Many of the documents later circulated freely online after a member of the Discord group posted them publicly.
U.S. allies have reportedly expressed concern over the security of U.S. intelligence before and after it was revealed that the leaks allegedly came from Teixeira, a junior IT worker in the Air National Guard. Teixeira was granted top-secret security clearance to aid his unit in sharing intelligence for combat support and homeland security.
Tim Pearce contributed to this report.