Several Israelis visiting Istanbul were picked up and flown out of Turkey by Israeli security officials to save them from “Iranian assassins” who were waiting to kill them at their hotels, The Times of Israel reported on Tuesday.
Israeli public broadcaster Kan radio reported on Sunday that security officials foiled an Iranian attack targeting Israelis in Turkey last month.
The Israeli officials coordinated with their Turkish counterparts to thwart the attack planned by an “Iranian network” in Turkey.
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The Times of Israel said an Israeli woman was visiting a market in Istanbul when she received a call from a senior Israeli official telling her to not return to her hotel because “Iranian assassins” were waiting there for her and her spouse.
“Instead, a caravan with some 10 Israeli security officers took the couple to the airport, leaving their stuff in the hotel, and then to Israel, where they were probed for clues about the plot against them,” the Times of Israel reported.
Tensions between Israel and Iran have heightened in recent weeks.
Israel had issued last month a warning to its citizens against travel to Turkey amid fears that Israelis would be targeted in a “revenge attack” for the assassination of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Colonel Sayad Khodai.
Earlier this week, the New York Times reported that Iran believes Israel killed two of its scientists by poisoning their food in May.
Should Iran’s suspicions prove to be true, it would be part of a shadow war where Israel targets Iran’s military personnel and officials and scientists related to the country’s nuclear program, and Iran retaliates by targeting Israelis abroad.
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