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Likud MK ‘in total shock’ after being targeted in alleged Iranian espionage effort

Likud MK Keti Shitrit attends a Knesset committee meeting on June 21, 2021. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Likud MK Keti Shitrit attends a Knesset committee meeting on June 21, 2021. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

A Knesset member who was allegedly targeted as part of an Iranian espionage operation says she was in “total shock” upon learning about the affair.

“I did not understand where this came from, I was in total shock,” Likud MK Keti Shitrit tells Channel 12 news. “I was really surprised when the Shin Bet called and asked to speak with me.”

Shitrit says she was in contact with one of the women implicated by the Shin Bet, who is suspected of having filmed the opposition lawmaker, and had met with her at a mall several months ago.

“I asked her how she’s doing and she told me she had problems with her son. I understand this was related to the army,” Shitrit says. “I explained to her that I have no ability to transfer people from place to place in the army.”

Shitrit will be a prosecution witness in the case, the TV report says.

It says one of the suspects was told by her Iranian handler to try to film Shitrit in compromising circumstances, and was unable to do so. The suspect was also told to try to get Shitrit to help the suspect’s son obtain a transfer to the IDF’s elite 8200 intelligence unit — an effort that also failed.

Meanwhile, lawyers for the five suspects say they intended no harm. One of their sons is quoted saying by Channel 12 that his mother is an elderly woman who would never do anything to harm Israel and worked to encourage the immigration of Jews from Iran.

Babek Yitzhaki, an Iranian-born journalist, says the affair is an “earthquake” in the community of Israelis born in Iran.

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