Turkey and Israel flags
Turkey and Israel flagsiStock

The Daily Sabah reports that eight suspects accused of spying for the Mossad were detained in a joint operation by the Turkish National Intelligence Organization (MIT) and Istanbul police on Friday.

Turkish Interior Minister Ali Yerlikaya tweeted that the suspects were gathering information on both corporations and individuals targeted by the Mossad.

Two of the alleged agents were kept in custody. The rest have been released subject to court supervision and limitations.

The arrest comes as the latest in a growing trend of Turkish arrests of alleged Israeli operatives. Justice Minister Yılmaz Tunç said most of the suspects were charged with committing “political or military espionage” on behalf of Israeli intelligence.

A significant point of concern for Turkish authorities is Israeli attempts to recruit foreign nationals, including Turkish, Syrian, Lebanese, and Palestinian operatives as part of its campaign to target Hamas personnel on Turkish soil. Türkiye maintains ties with the Hamas terror movement and refuses to classifying Hamas operatives as terrorists. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan warned Israel of “serious consequences” if Israel pressed ahead with its threat to attack Hamas officials on Turkish soil. However, ISA director Ronen Bar has stated that his organization is prepared to do precisely that.