Japan envoy says U.S. wiretapping of embassy 'regrettable' if true

The Japanese ambassador to the United States said Friday it would be "regrettable" if recent reports that U.S. authorities had eavesdropped on the embassy in Washington were accurate.

"If it's true, it will be regrettable. We are asking (the United States) what the truth is," Kenichiro Sasae told reporters, referring to a report that the U.S. National Security Agency had wiretapped embassies of countries including its allies such as Japan and members of the European Union.

"We have yet to hear any answer," Sasae said. "I think (the U.S. side) is still considering how best to explain to its ally."

The United States and the European Union already agreed they will have talks on the matter Monday in Washington. But Sasae said there was no plan for Japan and the United States to hold a similar meeting.

The move came after The Guardian newspaper of Britain reported top-secret NSA documents leaked by the whistleblower Edward Snowden showed that U.S. intelligence services were spying on embassies and diplomatic missions.