The order was issued by the Turkish Interior Ministry today, stating that search and detention warrants have been issued for Dahlan, due to his alleged involvement in perpetrating the attempted military coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his government on 15 July 2016, in cooperation with followers of the exiled Turkish cleric, Fethullah Gulen, who remains in the US.
The charges against Dahlan include: “forcibly attempting to change the constitutional order, exposing state secrets for espionage purposes, obtaining state secrets for political or military espionage, revealing secret information related to state’s security or political interest and international espionage.” Dahlan has previously denied allegations of any involvement in the attempted coup, however.
The exact charge that Turkey has issued against Dahlan is that of transferring money to the coup-plotters, on behalf of the Emirati government.
Last month, Turkish foreign minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu, labelled Dahlan as a “terrorist ringleader,” and accused him of being an Israeli agent, explaining this as the reason why he had fled. Cavusoglu also added that both Saudi Arabia and the UAE “have tried to replace Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas with Dahlan.
Dahlan also insulted Erdogan, calling him “delusional and mentally unstable, wishing to resurrect the Ottoman Empire in order to occupy the Arab world.”
Dahlan, a former head of security forces and exiled official of the Fatah party in the Gaza Strip, prior to Hamas’s domination and the Israeli blockade, has long been seen as a shadowy figure working behind the complexities of regional politics in the Middle East. He is currently known as a ‘fixer’ for the UAE government, and reportedly enjoys close ties to the UAE Al-Nahyan royal family, repeatedly being accused of interfering in issues throughout the region, such as the Syrian conflict in particular.
The addition of Dahlan to Turkey’s ‘red list’ of most wanted terrorists, comes a month after the country called on the international criminal police organisation, Interpol, to arrest him. It also comes after Turkey issued a ‘red notice’ for Dahlan in late November, placing him on the most wanted list of criminals, with a 10 million Turkish lira bounty for his capture. With this latest addition of Dahlan to the country’s terror list, however, the stakes have been increased and his reputation even more tarnished.
READ: Dahlan attacks Erdogan