GERMANY — BND: “Gulen not behind Turkey coup attempt”

“Turkey has tried to convince us of that at every level but so far it has not succeeded.”

BND head Bruno Kahl

BND head Bruno Kahl

President Erdogan has accused U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen to be the mastermind of last summer’s failed coup in Turkey. But, so far, the BND has found no evidence supporting this allegation. Follow us on Twitter: @Intel_Today

Turkey has accused Germany of supporting Fethullah Gulen. Ankara blames the U.S.-based cleric for last year’s coup and wants him to be extradited.

People close to President Erdogan’s administration have paid Mike Flynn’s consulting company more than US$ 500,000 to help with this matter. The former National Security Advisor had in fact written an opinion piece arguing that Gulen should be deported.

RELATED POST: Sean Spicer just told a whopper about Foreign Agent Mike Flynn

Theodore Roosevelt Malloch — President Donald Trump’s nominee to serve as U.S. ambassador to the European Union — told Turkish media he would like to see Fethullah Gülen face justice.

“It does seem remarkable to me that as the result of the coup attempt . . . that the United States would not, in due process and with judicial review in a fair hearing, make an extradition of Fethullah Gülen back to Turkey so that he can be held in a trial setting.”

“That seems to me something that this administration should take very seriously. I think that was dismissed in the Obama period.”

[NB. (1) Although is has never been done, the EU could “block” Malloch’s chances of becoming US ambassador by making him “persona non grata”.

(2) During his visit to Turkey on August 24, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden made it clear that such request is a legal matter, not one for the POTUS to decide.

(3) The United States and Turkey have an extradition Treaty. The formal process for dealing with extradition requires that Turkey provide fist solid evidence of Gülen’s involvement. Finally, the crimes alleged by Turkey must be “extraditable” acts under the U.S.-Turkey Treaty, which spells out specific extraditable acts. Treason — such as that implied by Erdogan’s demand for Gulen’s extradition — does not appear in the Treaty.]

The Turkish government has failed to convince Germany’s BND foreign intelligence agency that Fethullah Gulen was behind the failed coup in which more than 240 people were killed.

President Erdogan’s spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said doubts raised by Germany’s spy agency, the BND, that Fethullah Gulen was behind the failed uprising were proof of Berlin’s support.

In an interview with news magazine Der Spiegel — published on Saturday — BND head Bruno Kahl said:

“Turkey has tried to convince us of that at every level but so far it has not succeeded.”

Turkey’s failed coup — July 15 2016

Rogue soldiers commandeered tanks, warplanes and helicopters, attacking parliament and attempting to overthrow the government.

There has been speculation — widely believed in Turkey — that the CIA was behind the Coup.

RELATED POST: Turkey Coup: “CIA Plotters’ Meeting” in Büyükada

But some analysts have also suggested that the Turkish government initiated a pseudo-coup in order to legitimate a crackdown on opponents. Bruno Kahl does not think this theory to be correct.

SPIEGEL: Erdogan has claimed that the cleric Fetullah Gülen was behind the coup attempt last July. More than 100,000 civil servants lost their jobs in the aftermath and thousands have been imprisoned. Was Gülen really behind the coup?

Kahl: Turkey has tried to convince us on a number of different levels. But they haven’t yet been successful.

SPIEGEL: What is your explanation for the coup attempt against Erdogan? Was it staged by the government?

Kahl: The coup attempt wasn’t staged by the state. Even before July 15, the government had launched a large wave of purges. That is why elements within the military thought they should quickly launch a coup before they too were purged. But it was too late and they were purged as well.

SPIEGEL: That doesn’t sound like the kind of vast conspiracy of the kind that President Erdogan always claims.

Kahl: The consequences of the putsch that we have seen would have happened anyway, if perhaps not as deep and radical. The coup was likely just a welcome pretext.

Fethullah Gulen

Asked whether the Gulen movement was extreme Islamist or terrorist, Kahl said it was a “civil association that aims to provide further religious and secular education”.

SPIEGEL: Is the Gülen movement an extremist-Islamist movement? Is it perhaps even a terrorist group?

Kahl: The Gülen movement is a civilian association for religious and secular education. For years, it was a collection of tutoring centers and training facilities that worked together with Erdogan.

SPIEGEL: Would you call the movement a sect?

Kahl: I wouldn’t say that. That’s an explanation that is more prevalent in Western societies. One can, though, say that the Gülen movement wasn’t a meaningless minority.

The fight against IS

SPIEGEL: In the fight against IS, Turkey is one of Germany’s most important allies. Given those ties, what is your view of the recent friction between the German government and the regime of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan?

Kahl: It isn’t my job to comment on relations between the German government and foreign governments. From the perspective of the rule of law, there have been developments in Turkey that are anything but reassuring. The question is: will the country remain a partner in the security alliance?

SPIEGEL: At the moment, Erdogan seems intent on worsening his relationship with the West.

Kahl: There are always better and worse phases. Intelligence agencies must also work together with states that don’t conform to our constitutional principles. Because of its geographic location, we don’t want to destroy these channels.

The BND

The BND  (German: Bundesnachrichtendienst) is the foreign intelligence agency of Germany, directly subordinated to the Chancellor’s Office. Its headquarters are in Pullach near Munich, and Berlin (planned to be centralised in Berlin, with about 4,000 people).

RELATED POST: Who Is Who in World Intelligence and Security Agencies : BND ORGANIZATION CHART

RELATED POST: MI6 Alex Younger & BND Bruno Kahl: Russian Hackers Will Target European 2017 Elections

PS: In the same interview with SPIEGEL , BND chief Bruno Kahl also speaks about a possible Russian interference in German elections, Snowden, WikiLeaks, Trump, the surveillance on journalists, human intelligence (HUMINT) and what to expect from Islamic State. Intel Today will update the posts on these issues to include this new information.

 

Fethullah Gulen Interview on CNN — Fareed Zakaria

 

 

REFERENCES

German spy agency chief says does not believe Gulen behind Turkey coup attempt — REUTERS

‘Coup in Turkey Was Just a Welcome Pretext’ — Der Spiegel (Interview with German Intelligence Chief)

Trump’s EU Ambassador Wants to Send Cleric Gülen Back to Turkey — Newsmax

Donald Trump’s next ambassador in Brussels says his application could be blocked by other EU countries — The Telegraph

After failed Turkey coup, must U.S. extradite cleric? — CNN

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GERMANY — BND: “Gulen not behind Turkey coup attempt”

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