(Bloomberg) -- Germany’s defense ministry is probing an intelligence leak after Russian media published a conversation between high-ranking air force officials about the possible deployment of Taurus long-range missiles in Ukraine.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz, on the sidelines of a meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican, spoke of the incident as a “very serious matter.”

The Federal Office for Military Counterintelligence will investigate, a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Defense said in a written response to Bloomberg News. She didn’t comment further on the exact time and content of the intercepted talks.

For the German military it’s an embarrassing incident, especially as there have been discussions for some time about urgently-needed modernization.

The ministry’s move comes after Der Spiegel reported that the media platform Russia Today had obtained a 30-minute audio recording between air force chief Ingo Gerhartz and several high-ranking officers, in which they discussed a possible Taurus delivery to Kyiv.

Among other things, the officials discussed how the German military could help with the training of Ukrainian pilots and programming of the systems for the weapons.  

Der Spiegel and the German press agency DPA reported separately that the recording has been determined to be authentic. According to the reports, the commercial, non-encrypted platform WebEx was used for the meeting, invitations for which were sent to cell phones via a Bundeswehr office landline.

“There are indications that an insufficiently secure means of communication was used in view of the content that was obviously discussed,” a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Defense told Bild am Sonntag. “This is one of the subjects of further investigations,” she said. 

In response, Germany’s largest opposition party, the CDU/CSU, called on the government in Berlin to tighten regulations for internal military communication.

“Every communication must be protected to the maximum,” Johann Wadephul,, deputy chairman of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group, told RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland. 

In a series of public statements, Scholz has repeatedly ruled out the deployment of Taurus to Ukraine.  

Read more: Scholz Closes Door on Sending Long-Range Missiles to Ukraine

(Updates with details in seventh and eighth paragraphs)

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