An Egyptian soldier stands guard at the Taba crossing between Egypt and Israel on October 26, 2011
An Egyptian soldier stands guard at the Taba crossing between Egypt and Israel on October 26, 2011. Egyptian prosecutors were interrogating on Tuesday an Israeli man in the Red Sea port of Nuweiba who is suspected of espionage, a judicial source said. © Mahmud Khaled - AFP/File
An Egyptian soldier stands guard at the Taba crossing between Egypt and Israel  on October 26, 2011
AFP
Last updated: January 1, 2013

Egypt questions suspected Israeli spy

Egyptian prosecutors were interrogating on Tuesday an Israeli man in the Red Sea port of Nuweiba who is suspected of espionage, a judicial source said.

"An Israel man was arrested on Monday in Taba on suspicion of espionage. He was remanded today in police custody for four days pending investigation," the source said.

The suspect "infiltrated into Egypt through a mountainous area near Taba," the source added, without elaborating.

In October 2011, Egypt freed a US-Israeli citizen under a prisoner exchange after he was arrested in Cairo and accused of working for Israel's Mossad spy agency and sowing sectarian strife in Egypt, allegations he denied.

Israeli media identified the suspect arrested in Taba as 24-year-old Andrey Pshenichnikov, a Russian-born immigrant to Israel who had been arrested by the Israeli Shin Bet security service last year over his pro-Palestinian activism.

Haaretz newspaper said that he had served for 4 1/2 years in the Israeli military.

"After being released from the army, he underwent a dramatic political shift and started being active with radical left-wing organizations," it wrote on Tuesday.

"A year ago he moved to Bethlehem and after that to the Deheishe refugee camp," in the West Bank, it added.

"His time living among Palestinians ended when he was arrested by the Shin Bet and accused of being a member of a terror organization, but was later released after a court hearing."

Maariv daily said that he had tried to revoke his Israeli citizenship and in court said "that he did not recognize either the State of Israel or the Zionist establishment."

Israeli foreign ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor told AFP that there had so far been no formal notification from Egypt that any Israeli had been arrested there.

"We have asked the Egyptians for information," he said. "We are waiting to hear officially from the authorities what they suspect him of and what they intend to do. On that basis we shall know what we can do."

blog comments powered by Disqus
Stay Connected
twitter icon Twitter 13,558 linkedin icon LinkedIn 463
facebook icon Facebook 87,173 google+ icon Google+ 272