Bennett Thanks Turkey for Collaboration in Thwarting Attacks on Israelis

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan. (REUTERS/Umit Bektas/File Photo)

Yerushalayim and Ankara’s efforts to prevent attacks against Israelis have led to the uncovering of several terrorist cells in Turkey in recent days, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett revealed on Monday.

According to Bennett, the success was due to the close collaboration between the two countries’ security agencies to find the would-be perpetrators. “The efforts saw results, we foiled several attempts to attack and several terrorists were arrested on Turkish soil,” Bennett said.

Bennett went on to thank Turkish President Recept Tayyip Erdogan and Turkish officials for helping protect Israelis. “We continue to work together to bring back normalcy,” Bennett stated, but stressed that the terror threat warning was still in effect and Israelis should do their utmost to exercise caution in Turkey.

In recent days government officials have called publicly on Israelis to avoid going to Turkey, particularly to Istanbul, due to an Iranian plot to kidnap or kill Israelis. The National Security Council’s Counterterrorism Bureau also raised its travel warning for Istanbul to 4, the highest level. A Level 4 travel warning means that Israelis should not travel to Istanbul, and any Israelis currently there should leave.

On Friday, Channel 12 reported that Israeli and Turkish intelligence services managed to thwart an attack against Israelis, arresting the members of an Iranian terrorist cell. It is believed that Iran is seeking to retaliate against the recent mysterious deaths of Iranian scientists and top Revolutionary Guard officers, which Tehran blames on Israel.

Defense Minister Benny Gantz urged Israeli nationals visiting Turkey to follow the recommendations issued by the ministry to minimize risk amid the threat of an Iranian attack. “Israel is working to foil the Iranians’ attempts to carry out an attack and is preparing to respond with force in the face of any threat to Israeli citizens everywhere,” the official said.

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