Iran denies involvement in Turkey protests
Azerbaijan, Baku, June 5 /Trend S.Isayev, D. Khatinoglu/
Spokesman for Iran's Foreign Ministry, Abbas Aragchi said that the country has no involvement in the protests in Turkey, Fars news agency reported.
Aragchi noted that the Iranian side asked the Turkish government to clear the media-published claims regarding Iran's involvement.
He rejected the fact that Iran's intelligence services participated in the unrests in Turkey.
According to Aragchi, the Iranian side asked the Turkish side if any Iranians have been arrested during the protests, and if there are any, let Iranian side to have immediate access to those people.
Turkish Today's Zaman newspaper reported earlier that the police in Turkey arrested, among others, an Iranian national named Shayan Shamloo in connection with violent demonstrations in the Turkish capital that followed what was initially a peaceful environmental protest at Gezi Park.
According to a source in the government who wanted to remain anonymous because of the pending investigation into violent events held in a couple of locations in Ankara, the Iranian national was suspected to have played a provocateur role.
The same source also told Today's Zaman that authorities suspect Mr. Shamloo has connections with the Iranian intelligence.
Police have reportedly arrested some 15 foreign nationals across the country in connection with events and most of them have turned out to be Iranian nationals.
Another Turkish newspaper reported on June 4 that another Iranian national named Ramin Sarabi was arrested in Erzurum on charges of leading an attack plot. According to the investigation by the public prosecutor's office in Erzurum, Sarabi is believed to have links to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan hinted on foreign meddling into protests on June 3, saying that Turkish intelligence officials are working to determine whether there is any foreign link to the ongoing protests.
Prior to that, Erdogan criticized Iran and Hezbollah for participating in the fighting in Syria with forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, saying that the open support to the Syrian regime is working against Iran and Hezbollah in the Middle East and Islamic world.