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Participants of the G20 meeting held on September 5 in St Petersburg received a “poisoned gift”, reports La Stampa: a set of USB drives which hid spying devices designed to collect data from computers and smartphones.

The alert emerged after EU Council President Herman Van Rompuy asked German security services to analyse the gifts. The investigation is ongoing and it is not yet clear whether all participants were victims of the spy effort.

La Stampa notes that the affair came at the height of US-Russia tensions over the Syrian crisis and following the escape of former NSA contractor Edward Snowden to Moscow. The daily adds that the gift scandal “marks the official return to a conflict between the world’s secret services.”