Prosecutors in Egypt have ordered the detention of 29 Turkish nationals on suspicion of espionage as well as belonging to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood. According to the Egyptian constitution, it is illegal to spy on the government and the 29 are in direct violation of the same.
The prosecution statement on Wednesday said the 29 illegally facilitated international calls made by people in Egypt through Turkish-based servers offered at discounted charges. The report accuses them of eavesdropping on the calls to gather information on conditions in Egypt that they passed onto Turkish intelligence.
Egypt’s Homeland Security Agency claims that the 29 detainees passed international online calls via servers hosted in Turkey collecting information about negative and positive conditions inside Egypt to plot against the country from Turkey. They are further accused of money laundering, illegal currency trade and joining a terrorist organization.
Egypt’s ties with Turkey have been tensed since the Egyptian military removed former Islamist President, Mohamed Morsi in 2013 and later blacklisted his Muslim Brotherhood group as a terrorist organization, a move that has been officially rejected by Turkey that hosted fleeing Brotherhood members and supporters.