Monday, May 21, 2012

Turkey goes nuts, investigates bird for being Israeli spy, says Israel to deploy 20,000 commandos in Greek Cyprus

The bird's been detained on account of being a Mossad spy, for having too big a nostril.
(JPost) An increasing paranoia of Israeli zoological militancy conspiracy theories has turned a small bird with a larger than normal nostril and Israeli foot band into the latest suspected Mossad spy.

“Tell me. If it’s a spy would they put that it’s from Israel? Are they that stupid?” Ohad Hatzofe, an avian ecologist for Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority (NPA), told The Media Line.

A farmer in Gaziantep province in southeastern Turkey last week turned the dead Merops Apiaster, commonly known as the European Bee-Eater, to police after he noticed its band read “Tel Aviv University, Israel,” with serial number C43917. Local police turned it over to the regional Agriculture directorate, which then quickly brought in Turkey’s national counter intelligence police, Haberturk reported.

“It might be used for audio or video” surveillance, Akif Aslanpay, head of the Animal Health Division at Gaziantep’s Agriculture Directorate was quoted as saying. “Israel can do such things.”

The bird’s band wasn’t the only thing that raised suspicions; it was its huge nostril.

“We saw that the bird’s left nostril was three times larger than its right,” said Nebi Koca, president of the local Beekeepers Association, to whom the bird was first brought by the farmers who found it. “Presumably, anything could have been placed in there.”

Turkish news agency reports of Israel's plan to deploy commandos to safeguard Israelis, natural gas plant on Greek island; Agency estimates number of Israeli citizens in area to rise to 30,000.
(Ynet) Israel plans to deploy 20,000 commandos in Greek Cyprus in order to protect its energy projects in the region, Anatolia news agency reported Sunday.

According to the puzzling report, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Greek Cypriot counterpart, Demetris Christofias, met in February in order to discuss the two countries' joint ventures.

Netanyahu reportedly offered to undertake all of the expenses required to construct a gas plant needed to extract the natural gas found in the Mediterranean Sea. In exchange for his offer, the prime minister asked that all of the 10,000 personnel that would work at the plant be brought in from Israel with their families, increasing the number of Israeli citizens in the area to nearly 30,000.

The high number of Israelis in Greek Cyprus would present a security issue, which Netanyahu suggested be solved by sending as many as 20,000 Israeli commandos to safeguard both the Israelis and the natural gas plant, the agency said.

According to the report, Israel offered to place the personnel and commandos in Limassol in Greek Cyprus."The Israelis who come, settle here for good," the news agency's source in Greek Cyprus said.

The Turkish news agency further cited a source, claiming that the Greek Cypriot government headed by Christofias, specifically asked Netanyahu to convince Israeli businessmen to halt their investments in Turkish Cyprus.