Israel urges citizens to leave Turkish city — Analysis
Officials from Counterterrorism advised citizens not to travel to Istanbul because of Iranian terrorist attacks
Following claims that officials had stopped multiple Iranian attacks on tourists, an Israeli travel advisory has been issued for Istanbul.
Foreign Minister Yair Lapid announcedThe new advisory was published Monday. “a series of attempts at Iranian terrorist attacks against Israelis who went on vacation in Istanbul”In recent weeks.
“We call on Israelis not to fly to Istanbul and if you have no vital need do not fly to Turkey. If you are already in Istanbul, return to Israel as soon as possible,”He added, “No vacation is worth your life.”
Lapid’s statement coincided with a decision by Israel’s Counter-Terrorism Bureau to raise the alert level for Istanbul to the most severe rating on the scale – a distinction shared with conflict-prone nations like Afghanistan and Yemen – “given the continued threat and Iranian intentions to hurt Israelis.”Rest of Turkey received a lower warning, urging them to avoid non-essential travel.
Although the FM didn’t provide much information about the Iranian plots to attack, they did say that they were aiming at “kidnap or murder”Local media reported that Israelis were among those who visited Istanbul. “whisked away”Last week, security personnel were forced to evacuate the city due to fears that Iranian assassins might strike. Israel’s Channel 13 noted that officials are not planning to conduct a rescue operation, and that some citizens wished to remain in the city despite the warnings, though a surge of flights carrying thousands of passengers from Turkey to Israel was reported on Monday.
The heightened alarm over Istanbul follows previous warnings from Israel’s National Security Council, which declared last month that “Iranian terrorist operatives”Turkey, where they posed a threat for Israelis. Counter-terrorism officials reportedly reached out to more than 100 people living in Turkey and requested that they return home.
Tensions between Israel and Iran have soared in recent weeks, with Tehran accusing its rival of assassinating an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) officer in the Iranian capital last month. Although the Israeli government is yet to address the claims, an anonymous intelligence officer told The New York Times that the Jewish State had indeed been behind the murder, which was later refuted by a top Israeli lawmaker.
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