The Swiss ambassador in Berlin, Thomas Borer, has hit back at allegations that he received a nocturnal female visitor to the embassy last month.
Borer and his Texan wife, Shawne Fielding, dismissed the story, published in the SonntagsBlick newspaper, as "disgusting allegations". They said the Ringier-Presse, which owns Sonntagsblick, had embarked on a slanderous campaign.
On Tuesday, the Swiss Foreign Ministry announced it was standing by Borer and his version of events. "Until proven otherwise, we have no reason to doubt his story," said Ruedi Christen, a spokesman for the ministry.
According to the newspaper, a department store beautician visited Borer's apartment on the night of March 21. The paper published photographs of a parked vehicle outside the embassy allegedly belonging to the guest, who was then shown inside a Mercedes that was headed for the embassy garage.
The photographs were taken from security cameras located outside the German Chancellor's office, located next to the embassy, the paper said.
"The German chancellor's office ... has assured me that no such photographs and no such videos exist," Borer said. "And I do not appear on the same photos as the lady in question."
Borer added that the Mercedes belonged to his wife. The woman featured in the photographs also distanced herself from the allegations on Monday.
Wife backs Borer
"This story has been completely made up by the Ringier-Presse. I stand by my husband and will support him against these dreadful allegations," Fielding said. "The SonntagsBlick knows how to spin a story so that it can't get into trouble."
Meanwhile, the paper's editor-in-chief, Matthias Nolte, said he fully backed the story. "It's correct, as written in the paper," he said.
"It's odd that [Borer] is brave enough to deny it. You just have to read the story carefully - of course, what people chose to read into it is another matter."
swissinfo with agencies