Spy scandal looms in S. Africa

Another government scandal is surfacing in South Africa. A former agent of the government's intelligence service -- the Department of National Security (DONS) -- has started disclosing a number of convert operations by the government, which allegedly include surveillance on deomestic critics of the government.

Arthur McGiven, who fled the country in November with some 50 purioined documents from DONS files, has told a London newspaper that the government routinely opens mail and taps the telephones of its political opponents.

Two targets of the alleged internal surveillance: longtime opposition parliamentarian Helen Suzman and right-wing activist Jaap Marais.

The South African government has declined to confirm or deny the charges, but DONS does confirm that Mr. McGiven formely was employed by the agency.

DONS is also alleged to have financed attempts to undermine the liberal National Union of South African Students, a predominantly white organization that opposes the government's policy of apartheld (racial segregation).

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