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12° Nicosia,
02 March, 2024
 
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Planned attack against Jews in Cyprus thwarted

The recent arrest of two Iranians in highlight vulnerabilities and diplomatic challenges for the Republic

Marina Economides

Marina Economides

The Cypriot police arrested two Iranians last month, alleging their connection to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards of Iran (IRGC), targeting Jewish citizens in Cyprus. The individuals are currently in custody, with a deportation warrant. This marks the third incident in the last two years, bringing Cyprus back to the forefront of terrorist activities.

The first incident occurred two years ago, involving the arrest of an Azeri with a Russian passport, allegedly acting on behalf of the Revolutionary Guards. The second incident was last June when a terrorist act was prevented on the territory of the Republic of Cyprus. The successful prevention of a terrorist act this time is attributed to the close cooperation of Cypriot security services with their Western counterparts. However, this case renews the discussion about the security vulnerability due to the occupied territories, providing a potential loophole for terrorists to send recruits to the free areas beyond the control of the Republic of Cyprus. With the targets primarily being citizens of Jewish origin, there is increased concern about the situation in the Occupied Territories, given the lack of control by the Republic of Cyprus and the significant number of Israeli citizens present.

The handler of the two Iranians, Mohammed Reza Ebadi Arablu, is linked to the terrorist act prevented last November in Georgia, targeting Jewish-born businessman Itzik Moshe in Tbilisi.

Profiles of those arrested:

The two Iranians were in the initial stage of gathering information about their targets. They entered the Free Territories through the occupied territories and were recognized as political refugees. Although they were not acting together, reliable sources indicate they had the same operator, Mohammed Reza Ebadi Arablu, who has already been exposed for his actions in Georgia.

Cyprus' state intelligence services closely monitored the movements of the two Iranians over the past two months, successfully preventing potential terrorist acts. Of particular concern is how the issue of the occupied territories will be handled, given the significant presence of Iranians and, more importantly, Israeli citizens. Security services also note the increasing influence of Iranian paramilitary groups in the region, extending to the Mediterranean. The Republic of Cyprus expresses a desire to maintain communication channels and diplomatic relations but does not hide dissatisfaction with the Revolutionary Guards' attitude, emphasizing zero tolerance for any terrorist activity.

[This article was translated from its Greek original]

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Cyprus  |  Israel  |  Iran

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