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BERLIN (AP) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel says the relationship between Germany and the United States as well as the future of a trans-Atlantic free trade agreement have been "put on test" by allegations of massive spying by the U.S. National Security Agency.

During a statement Monday to Parliament, Merkel called the allegations about NSA spying "grave" and said they must be investigated to re-establish trust.

At the same time, Merkel said the alliance with Washington "remains a fundamental guarantor for our freedom and our security."

Media reports last month that Merkel's phone had been tapped by NSA operatives unleashed a firestorm of criticism in Germany, which has been among America's closest European allies since the end of World War II.

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