Turkish citizen arrested in Israel arrives in Istanbul

Turkish citizen arrested in Israel arrives in Istanbul

ISTANBUL - Anadolu Agency
Turkish citizen arrested in Israel arrives in Istanbul

Turkish citizen Ebru Özkan, who was arrested in Israel on June 11, arrived in Turkey early July 16.

Turkish Airlines flight carrying Ebru Özkan landed in Istanbul.

Earlier, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan called Turkish citizen who was arrested in Israel and conveyed her get well wishes, according to Presidential Spokesperson İbrahim Kalın.

Kalın said on his Twitter account that Ebru Özkan was arrested on groundless claims in Israel and is returning to Turkey.

“I congratulate her for her unshaken stance on the process and wish her get well," Kalın added.

She was arrested on June 11 at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport for alleged links to “terrorist groups”.

Özkan, 27, had appeared at a hearing earlier in the day at the Ofer military court in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

The court ruled to release Özkan on bail of 15,000 Israeli shekels (roughly $4,110), taking her passport. In addition, she had to visit the nearest police station. Prosecutors lodged an objection, but it was dismissed by the court.

The bill of indictment prepared by Israeli prosecutors accused Özkan of "helping and providing various services to Hamas, disturbing peace and bringing enemy money into Israel".

After her three-day visit to Jerusalem, right before she came back to Istanbul on July 11, the Israeli police in Tel Aviv airport took Özkan under custody.

She is not the first Turkish national to have been recently detained by Israeli authorities.

In January, Osman Hazır, a 46-year-old Turkish citizen, was arrested for snapping a selfie at East Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque while holding a Turkish flag.

Last December, Israel arrested Abdullah Kızılırmak and Mehmet Gargılı after they quarreled with Israeli police, who had tried to bar them from entering the flashpoint holy site.

The same month, Adem Koç was arrested inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound for allegedly “disturbing peace and taking part in an illegal demonstration”.