A diplomatic row between Russia and Germany over the 2015 hacking attack on German parliament is a minor episode designed to reassure Berlin's western partners, who fear a rapprochement between the two countries, that Germany does not pursue pro-Russian policy in Europe, experts told Sputnik
MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 30th May, 2020) A diplomatic row between Russia and Germany over the 2015 hacking attack on German parliament is a minor episode designed to reassure Berlin's western partners, who fear a rapprochement between the two countries, that Germany does not pursue pro-Russian policy in Europe, experts told Sputnik.
Earlier this week, Russian Ambassador to Germany Sergey Nechaev was summoned to the German Foreign Ministry after the German prosecution had issued an international arrest warrant for Russian citizen Dmitry Badin, suspected of participating in a hacker attack on the Bundestag in the spring of 2015. Berlin believes Badin was an employee of a Russian military intelligence agency at the moment of the attack. Within the context, Germany plans to activate cybersanctions on Russia. At the same time, Moscow insists Berlin has not provided any evidence.
"The fact is that, on the one hand, Germany always wanted to strengthen its positions in the West in the western alliances, in the Western coordinate system. At the same time, it is highly dependent on Russia. The West, primarily the US, considers Germany as a very unreliable partner who cannot decide which side it is on. Therefore, from time to time, Germany has to take steps, which are hard to explain and sometimes are illogical, to prove that it is not dependent on Russia and does not pursue a pro-Russian policy in Europe," Sergey Henke, a member of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, told Sputnik.
According to the politician, the two countries' rapprochement is unavoidable as they need to cooperate due to a number of political and economic factors.
"A bright example is the situation with the Nord Stream [2 gas pipeline project]. Germany is isolated in this regard, especially when eastern European countries, the US and other western countries criticize it, fearing the increase of Russian influence," Henke said referring to Berlin's decision to support to companies engaged in the project despite US sanctions, as Germany continues to view Nord Stream 2 in positive terms.
The lawmaker believes that Russia and Germany depend on each other and have no alternative to rapprochement. According to the politician, Russia is technologically dependent on Germany and needs investments. In addition, the main sector of the Russian economy oil industry needs to be modernized, and Russia can get new technologies only from Germany. Russia also needs investments of up to $900 billion Dollars to restructure the economy. These funds can only be obtained from Germany, the lawmaker said.
Meanwhile, Berlin depends on energy resources, and Russia is currently covering about 35 percent of Germany's energy demand, Henke added. Russia also promises to help Germany become a permanent member of the UN Security Council a goal that Germany has long been seeking and that its main ally in Europe, France, opposes. In addition, Germany's desire to spread its influence across Eastern Europe cannot be realized without cooperation with Russia, the politician said.
"In addition, Germany wants to reduce the US's influence in Europe, Russia has the same goal, but it [Berlin] also cannot completely break ties with the US, because it is the main country in NATO," Henke noted.
"The fact is that there is no possibility to check whether such a hacker attack was conducted and by whom it was carried out. It turns out that in this case, you have to take it for granted. For a long time, I have not believed our government for a word," AfD party member Albert Breininger, told Sputnik.
According to the lawmaker, the government of German Chancellor Angela Merkel has repeatedly proved that the interests of Germany are not in the first place for the authorities. As usual, they will seek a solution at the European level and focus on saving the European Union, settling climate issues and so on, Breininger added.
German prosecutors, however, are confident that not only can they can prove that Russian citizen Dmitry Badin participated in the attack, which reportedly took place from April 30 to May 20 in 2015, but also can detail how and when the attack took place. Badin allegedly installed malicious software onto the Bundestag computer system on May 7, 2015. Lawmakers were sent emails designed to look like they were from the United Nations, which allowed hackers to gain access and download 16 gigabytes of data.
Within the context, Germany is currently considering activating cybersanctions on Russia. Earlier this week, the German Foreign Ministry's spokeswoman, Maria Adebahr, confirmed that the measures envisioned assets freeze and restrictions on the European Union entry.