Turkey Arrests US Embassy Employee

Tyler Durden's picture

In a move that looks suspiciously like retaliation, Turkish police on Wednesday arrested a local employee of the US embassy in Istanbul and charged him with espionage and trying to overthrow the government, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing local media.

The arrest stemmed from the man’s alleged support for US-based Turkish Cleric Fettulah Gulen, a former ally of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who escaped to the US nearly two decades ago after he and Erdogan had a falling out. The president has accused Gulen of orchestrating last June’s attempted coup from his home in Pennsylvania, and his administration has relentlessly purged suspected supporters from nearly every institution in Turkish society.

Unsurprisingly, the US government criticized the arrest, claiming the charges against the man were unfounded.  Embassy officials told WSJ they were “deeply disturbed” by the arrest.

“We believe these allegations to be wholly without merit.”


“Baseless, anonymous allegations against our employees undermine and devalue this longstanding partnership,” it said.

Specifically, the embassy employee is accused of having ties to a former prosecutor and four former police chiefs who led a corruption probe in 2013 that involved some of Erdogan’s allies. The government said cleric Fethullah Gulen’s movement pushed the investigation behind the scenes to try and undermine Erdogan, a claim Gulen denies. Gulen also denies involvement in last year’s coup attempt.

Turkey has been pressing the US to extradite Gulen, who is a wanted man in his home country, but the US has maintained that the evidence against Gulen isn’t strong enough to warrant extradition, straining the relationship between Trump and Erdogan. The two world leaders have praised one another, and Trump received Erdogan and his entourage at the White House in the spring.

As WSJ points out, Erdogan last month raised the possibility of releasing an American pastor, Andrew Brunson, who was detained almost a year ago in the wake of the coup attempt, in exchange for Gulen.

Brunson has been charged with terrorism-related activity and espionage for alleged ties to Gulen that the US has denounced as unfounded.

Of course, the diplomatic tug of war over Gulen is just one of several flashpoints in the US’s increasingly fraught relationship with Turkey, a fellow NATO member. Erdogan has been widely criticized for not doing enough to stop ISIS fighters from crossing Turkey’s porous southern border with Syria. In response, the president has repeatedly accused the US of supporting and arming ISIS, a claim the US has denied.

The relationship between the two countries was further strained last month when local prosecutors unveiled criminal charges against members of Erdogan’s security detail after his body guards viciously attacked a group of Kurdish protesters in Washington in the spring.

Just days after those charges were announced, Erdogan’s bodyguards brutally assaulted protesters who interrupted a speech Erdogan was delivering in New York City when he was in town for the UN General Assembly last month.  The US has also criticized Erdogan’s increasingly paranoid crackdown on dissent, which has led to tens of thousands of arrests.

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RagaMuffin's picture

If it was Victoria Nuland , passing through, send a thank you note....quick

07564111's picture

this is what happens when the US thinks it can do as it pleases.

The blow-back for ignoring the Vienna Diplomatic Conventions will be severe, no longer will the US be able to count on it's 'Name' as a means of avoiding arrest in foreign lands.

Urban Roman's picture

Turkish "cleric"? Why do they always say "cleric"?

Why can't they just say "asshole"?

Koba the Dread's picture

They call them 'clerics' because they're clerics. In your case, they call you 'asshole' because. Well, you know.

robertsgt40's picture

US embassy employee arrested for espionage?  Noooo say it ain't so.  Who would do such a thing?  LMFAO 

philipat's picture

Unfortunately, The Vienna Convention regarding Diplomatic Immunity does not apply to local staff. It does apply to the confiscation of property owned and used by another State, for instance Russian property in the US. For no reason.

Laughing.Man's picture

Is Gulen really in charge?  It's been claimed that he's suffering from dementia.  It's more likely that his movement have already been taken over.

NoDecaf's picture

USSA empire crumbling faster every day from abroad and from within.

Monthly news is compressed into days.

YourAverageJoe's picture

What, no mention of the Turks sucker punching people in New York City last month?

It may be time to stop by Mr Aydin's house and take a shit in his flowerbed.....

  • Turkish Consulate General in Houston, United States

    1990 Post Oak Boulevard, Suite 1300
    Houston, TX 77056-3813
    United States
  • (+1) 713-622 58 49
    (+1) 713-622 03 24
  • FAX
  • (+1) 713-623 66 39
  • consulate.houston@mfa.gov.tr
  • houston.bk.mfa.gov.tr
  • Mr Cemalettin Aydin, Consul General
07564111's picture

I can do the same for the US mission in Russia,,shall we play a game mr. fuckwit ?

Kafir Goyim's picture

Did some US security guys beat up a bunch of russian civilians recently on the streets of Moscow?  No?  Then shut the fuck up.

07564111's picture

lol > langley shills lose again, poor craft they teach now.

Kafir Goyim's picture

Fag child.   Go piss on a Turk.  I hear they like it.

07564111's picture

I hear golden showers are a favorite of the US, so I piss langley instead :D :D

The Old Man's picture

Trade for Gulen!!

venturen's picture

Obama did a bang up job....his lacky Phil Murphy was ambassador is now running for Gov of NJ...Goldman employee! Can't make this stuff up!

WTFUD's picture

If you shot every Goldman Employee (past & present) in the head, you'd go a long way to draining the swamp. US.gov loves Goldman as witness President Liar filling all the top positions at Treasury with this cult, who in turn fill the next 3 layers with their spawn.

silverer's picture

Hard to tell anymore who's the top BS'er, but I think Turkey has decided they don't particularly want to be on a US tether anymore.

peippe's picture

Turkey is not a friend to anyone but Turkey

Koba the Dread's picture

A rare note of sanity. Thank you. And why shouldn't it be so?

WTFUD's picture

So what? If Trump visited Iran instead of Israel he might just learn something about geopolitical realities. Why visit Israel when he already has enough Israeli picks in his Government?

Rex Andrus's picture

Gulen is spy for the Erdo gang.

johnnycanuck's picture

Nice 'partner' Vlad's got there.

But the US dotard, really really likes the guy.


"(Erdogan) has become a friend of mine," Trump said as the pair met on the fringes of the UN General Assembly. "He's running a very difficult part of the world."

"Frankly he's getting high marks," Trump added."

SHADEWELL's picture

I say

Ergodan a/k/a Gollum

See the comparison here. https://goo.gl/images/XUVxsH

Let the fucking diplomat go or there may be a successful coup

You fucking grotesque troll, shut the fuck up and sit the fuck down
You deseve a fucking beating for what your people inflicted on those folks in DC

Fuck you Gollum

RedDwarf's picture

Good to see that Mike Ehrmantraut wasn't killed by Walter White after all and found a new job under a new name for the US government.

Koba the Dread's picture

Yes, that is a great relief to me also.

Grandad Grumps's picture

I think diplomatic immunity and elitist immunity should be a thing of the past.

If someone is guilty of something bad, then they should be subject to the laws of th ecountry.

Of course I believe the same for congress critters, judges and other parasites.

JailBanksters's picture

I guess that, you can't arrest me I'm an AMERICAN !! didn't work.


sheikurbootie's picture

A US embassy employee doesn't mean he's a citizen, just an employee.  I've held diplomatic passport/immunity in the past.

frontierland's picture

Outrageous!  A US Diplomat would never knowingly subvert another Nations interests.