Turkish spy networks to control opponents

Several investigations reveal the networks that Erdogan maintains in countries such as Greece or Australia
Atalayar_Erdogan dando un discurso

PHOTO/ Presidential press office via REUTERS  -   Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses the members of his party, the AKP, during a meeting in the parliament in Ankara on March 11, 2020

According to several investigations, the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is establishing spy networks through the Turkish embassies and diplomatic missions the country has in different countries, and is also counting on people of other nationalities. The aim would be to persecute the opponents of the AKP and Erdogan's presidency.

This kind of networks would have been uncovered in countries like Greece or Australia, where cells that operated to collect information against the opponents in order to be tried in Turkey have been dismantled.

Atalayar_Fetullah Gullen
PHOTO/REUTERS - Turkish clergyman Fethullah Gülen

Regarding what happened in Australia, the Swedish media Nordic Monitor has brought to light court documents that show how information has been collected from Turkish citizens living in different Australian cities such as Sydney, Canberra or Melbourne. The information obtained would be related to different statements or comments that would link them to Fetullah Gullen's movement. Through the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Attorney General, Adam Akinci, the names of these people would have been included in a list of those accused of terrorism.

In the case of Greece, two Greek citizens have been arrested in one of the operations carried out. Both are accused of spying for Turkey on the island of Rhodes. Two other persons are reportedly arrested in Athens on the same charges. In addition, another operation reportedly uncovered a network of at least 15 people, whose nationalities include not only Greeks and Turks but also Lebanese. They were also linked to an immigrant trafficking network.

Atalayar_El ministro turco de Relaciones Exteriores, Mevlut Casavoglu
PHOTO/PAVEL GOLOVKIN via REUTERS - The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey, Mevlut Cavusoglu

Interpol is said to have blocked access to Turkey's databases to prevent access to information that could be used to support trials against political opponents. The Swedish media Nordic Monitor is said to have been responsible for releasing these documents, dated 2018, in which the Ministry of Justice requested the lifting of the Interpol blockade.

Several European countries, such as Belgium, Finland, Poland and Germany, have refused several extradition requests in recent years on the grounds that they might violate the rights of the accused, and in many cases the charges have been found to be directly false.