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Mossad helped foil 12 attack plots on Israelis in Turkey over past 2 years – report

Most attacks said planned by Islamic State terror group; in wake of recent foiled alleged Iran operation, some business figures reportedly told to be extra cautious

In this October 13, 2014 photo, a man shows an IS flag at an Islamic bookstore in the Fatih district of Istanbul. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
In this October 13, 2014 photo, a man shows an IS flag at an Islamic bookstore in the Fatih district of Istanbul. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

The Mossad spy agency has helped foil 12 plots to carry out terror attacks on Israelis in Turkey over the past two years, Channel 12 news reported Saturday.

The network, which did not cite a source, credited the Mossad’s ties with Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization (MIT), which it said have strengthened in recent years despite the strained diplomatic relations between the countries.

Most of the reported attack plots were linked to the Islamic State jihadist terror group and targeted businesspeople and other Israelis in Turkey.

The report came a day after Turkish media and a Turkish-based Israeli businessman announced the uncovering of an Iranian plot to assassinate him. It also followed recent reports in Turkey of the indictment of 16 alleged Mossad spies.

Channel 12 cited Turkish media reports that a delegation of senior Israeli officials traveled to Turkey in the past few days.

The network speculated that one of those who participated was Mossad chief David Barnea who, the report said, personally oversees intelligence ties with Turkey.

Mossad chief David Barnea at a ceremony marking his taking the helm of the agency, on June 1, 2021. (Kobi Gideon/GPO)

According to the report, there are Israeli business figures who were recently advised to change their routines and be particularly cautious over fears they could also be targeted.

On Friday Turkish media said the country’s intelligence had thwarted an Iranian plan to assassinate an Israeli businessman in the country.

The intended target, Yair Geller, confirmed the reports.

Yair Geller speaks with Channel 13 news in an interview on February 11, 2022. (Screen capture: Twitter)

Authorities led an operation in recent days to arrest eight suspects in the case, according to the Sabah newspaper and many other media outlets.

The planned hit was to be a retaliation for the killing of Iranian nuclear chief Mohsen Fakhrizadeh in 2020, widely attributed to Israel’s Mossad, the reports said, as well as a means to hinder warming relations between Ankara and Jerusalem.

That reported plot was the latest alleged attempt by Iran to assassinate an Israeli businessman abroad. In November, Cypriot authorities filed charges against six suspects for allegedly planning to attack Israeli targets on the eastern Mediterranean island.

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