Turkey’s police has detained 2 Russians, reportedly, accusing them of espionage.
The Russian consulate has confirmed the information and noted that the Russian citizens deny the accusations.
According to the general consul, Turkey hasn’t notified the consulate about the nature of the accusations against the Russian citizens.
Turkey reportedly suspects 52-year-old Yury Anisimov and 55-year-old Aleksandr Smirnovare in killing Abdulvakhid Edelgireyev from the Chechen Republic, Russia.
Abdulvakhid Edelgireyev was a well-known Islamic extrimist. He was killed on November 1, 2015, in his car, next to his Istanbul home. Edelgireev was known as the administrator of the ‘Kavkaz Center’ website, a media outlet which supports extrimists in Russia.
According to Turkish media, the police found fake documents during the search (controversial reports argue these were ‘Interpol’ authorization papers).
The same reports said that the Turkish side believes the two Russian citizens are undercover intelligence agents.
Yury Anisimov and Aleksandr Smirnovare were detained on April 8, but tis information was revealed on April 13.
According to the Russian general consul, Russian diplomats took part in the preliminary hearings on Monday, but wasn’t allowed to stay for the main hearing.
“The detained told us they arrived [in Turkey] as tourists, and deny the accusations against them,” RT cites the Russian general consul.
“Regarding the reasons for the detention, the Turkish authorities didn’t tell us anything, citing alleged security concerns,” Interfax cties Aleksey Chekmaryov, from the Russian diplomatic mission.