February 11, 2022
Turkey arrested eight people in an alleged Iranian plot to assassinate Israeli-Turkish businessman Yair Geller in revenge for killing of its nuclear scientist.
According to local media on Friday, the Turkish intelligence agency, MIT, shared the information with Mossad when they were certain about the assassination attempt.
The Iranian spy cell was comprised of nine operatives, some Iranian and some Turkish, who planned to kill the Istanbul-based tycoon, who owns an engineering company specializing in aerospace and defense technology.
The hit was planned as a retaliation for the killing of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, who was known as the “father of Iran’s nuclear weapons program” and was assassinated outside Tehran on November 26, 2020, in an operation widely attributed to Mossad.
The Turkish media reports say the hit squad followed Geller to his home and workplace and was planning to use Turkish citizens to carry out the assassination to avoid detection.
Following a months-long surveillance operation, eight out of nine members of the cell were arrested by the Turkish police. The ninth member, who was the squad’s leader in Iran, was identified as Yasin Taheremamkendi, purportedly with links to the Iranian intelligence agencies.
Turkish media reported Wednesday that the country’s intelligence had arrested 17 people allegedly linked to Iranian intelligence who were planning to kidnap an Iranian dissident.
Iran has been implicated in many assassinations, kidnappings and terror attacks abroad against dissidents and opponents.