Turkish court remands suspected UAE spy

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In this image from video provided by WBFO, a Buffalo police officer appears to shove a man who walked up to police Thursday, June 4, 2020, in Buffalo, N.Y. Video from WBFO shows the man appearing to hit his head on the pavement, with blood leaking out as officers walk past to clear Niagara Square. Buffalo police initially said in a statement that a person “was injured when he tripped & fell,” WIVB-TV reported, but Capt. Jeff Rinaldo later told the TV station that an internal affairs investigation was opened. Police Commissioner Byron Lockwood suspended two officers late Thursday, the mayor’s statement said. (Mike Desmond/WBFO via AP)

Turkish court on Oct. 21 remanded in custody a Jordanian national for alleged espionage for the United Arab Emirates.

Counter-terrorism police and intelligence officers on Saturday detained the suspect, Ahmed Mahmoud Ayesh Al Astal, as part of an investigation carried out by the Sakarya Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office in northwestern Turkey.

Al Astal is accused of “obtaining and disclosing information that should remain confidential in terms of the security of the state, domestic or foreign political benefits for the purpose of political or military espionage.”

He allegedly infiltrated think tanks close to the Muslim Brotherhood organization as an anti-UAE opposition journalist, collecting information and documents, security sources said on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media.

Believed to have been in Turkey since 2013, Al Astal allegedly transferred information on Turkey’s relations around the world, domestic and foreign policy developments, and an attempted coup in Turkey by the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) in 2016 to the UAE.

FETÖ and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gülen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, in which 251 people were killed and nearly 2,200 injured.

Turkey accuses FETÖ of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

Hurriyet Daily News

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