Israel extends detention for Turkish national

Published 04.07.2018 23:29

An Israeli military court on Tuesday extended the detention of Turkish national Ebru Özkan, 27, who had been under arrest since June 11 for alleged links with terrorist groups, her lawyer said.

According to her lawyer Omar Khamaysa, the military court in Salim, northern Israel, decided to extend the detention by six more days despite Israeli prosecutor's demand for an eight-day extension.

Özkan was referred from Petah Tikva near Tel Aviv to another prison called HaSharon near Natanya. Officials from the Turkish Embassy in Tel Aviv also attended Tuesday's trial, the lawyer said.

Israeli forces arrested Özkan at Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv on June 11 when she was returning to Turkey. According to Khamaysa, she was arrested on charges of "threatening Israel's security and having links with terrorist groups" - allegations she denies.

She is not the first Turkish citizen to have been detained by Israeli authorities. In January, Osman Hazır, a 46-year-old Turkish national, was arrested for snapping a selfie at East Jerusalem's al-Aqsa Mosque while holding a Turkish flag. Last December, Israel arrested two other Turks - Abdullah Kızılırmak and Mehmet Gargılı - after the pair had quarreled with Israeli police who had tried to bar them from entering the flashpoint holy site. In the same month, Adem Koç, another Turkish national, was arrested inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound for allegedly "disturbing the peace and taking part in an illegal demonstration." Kızılırmak, Gargılı and Koç were all subsequently released on bail.

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