Times of Israel
Mossad chief Tamir Pardo met secretly with top Turkish intelligence officials to discuss Iran, Syria and the domestic protests in Turkey, the Turkish paper Hurriyet reported Wednesday.
According to the report, Pardo met Hakan Fidan, the undersecretary of Turkey’s intelligence agency, on Monday in Ankara. The two discussed the ongoing civil war in Syria and the Iranian presence in that country, which borders both Israel and Turkey, the report said.
Over 80,000 people have been killed in the ongoing fighting in Syria between President Bashar Assad’s forces and opposition fighters. Both Turkey and Israel have experienced spillovers from the civil war, as mortar shells and stray bullets crossed the border from Syria. Turkey has also taken in over 300,000 Syrian refugees.
Pardo was reportedly also updated about the Turkish protests, which are centered in Ankara’s Taksim Gezi Park, and the possible involvement of foreign countries in them. Sources told the newspaper that both Syrian and Iranian units were believed to be acting in Turkey against the government.
The protests, which were sparked during a rally against the planned demolition of a park in favor of a shopping center, have been ongoing for almost two weeks. Police stormed Taksim square, the protestors’ stronghold, early Wednesday morning as the government announced it was determined to disperse those gathered.
Four people have been killed, including a policeman, and about 5,000 have been treated for injuries or the effects of tear gas, according to the Turkish Human Rights Foundation.