Tuesday, November 06, 2018

  • Tuesday, November 06, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon


From the Sofia Globe:
Bulgarian Border Police officers at the country’s Kapitan Andreevo checkpoint have detained three Iranian men who attempted to enter the country using false Israeli passports, the Interior Ministry said on November 2.

The three men, aged 21, 28 and 32, arrived at the checkpoint, at Bulgaria’s border with Turkey, on October 31.

They presented Israeli passports, which on examination were found to have been falsified, the ministry said.

In custody at the Svilengrad office of the Bulgarian Border Police, it was established that the three men were Iranians, the statement said.

The men had been transferred to the special facility for temporary detention of foreigners in Lyubimets. Fast-track proceedings against them had been initiated, the Interior Ministry said.
This is not the first time this has happened. Nor the second or third.

In 2016, three Iranian nationals were caught in Italy with forged Israeli passports. They were deported to Turkey.

Also in 2016, two Iranians were arrested in India after attempting to board a flight using fake Israeli passports. The two, a married couple, intended to use the fake passports to immigrate to the United States.

And in 2014, two Iranians were arrested at an airport in Nairobi, Kenya, after attempting to enter the country using fake Israeli passports. They were sentenced under anti-terrorism laws to two years in prison, meaning they have been released by now.

The Iranians in this case are not necessarily spies. Iranian citizens like to buy forged passports in order to travel - not all Iranians can get passports to begin with, and even those who can are limited as to where they can travel. Israeli passports are considered valuable because they are so well accepted in Europe and elsewhere, and apparently easier to forge than many others.

Seven Iranians were arrested in Vancouver with forged Israeli passports in 2013 but they were planning to emigrate. But Iranians have been caught with other country's passports as well.

In order to avoid sanctions, over a hundred Iranian businessmen bought passports from Comoros, legally, until Comoros canceled them. Iranian law does not allow citizens to have foreign passports but they are allowing - or encouraging - businessmen to acquire a second passport to continue to do business worldwide.

Iranian businessmen have been linked to acquiring other countries' forged or stolen passports. Iran is apparently facilitating them getting Iraqi passports.

The worry about espionage is always there, of course. Especially among the "businessmen" that Iran is actively helping acquire false passports.

Israel has been involved in diplomatic incidents over the Mossad using fake or stolen passports from the UK and New Zealand. For some reason, this methodical use of fake passports by Iran has not yet been considered a big deal - even though Iran directly funds terror groups.

(h/t Yoel)




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