Egypt's State Security Prosecutor, Hisham Badawi, has charged an Egyptian student, Mohamed Essam Ghneim el-Attar, and three Israelis with spying for Israel.
In response, the Israeli Foreign Ministry is checking whether Egypt has extradition agreements with Canada and Turkey, where the Israeli suspects are believed to reside, Israel's Army Radio reported. Attar, who also holds Canadian citizenship, is under arrest, while warrants have been issued for the Israelis, Haaretz reported.
The three Israelis were identified by the state news agency, MENA, as Daniel Levi, Kemal Kosba and Tuncay Bubay. Kosba and Bubay also hold dual Turkish citizenship, MENA said. El Attar, a student at Cairo's Al-Azhar University, was arrested January 1 2007 after returning to Egypt from a family visit abroad.
He reportedly moved to Turkey in 2001, where he met the Israelis, who allegedly recruited him to provide information about Egypt and about other Arabs living in Turkey. Later, his Israeli dealers allegedly asked him to move to Canada, which he did in 2003. He allegedly used his position at a bank in Canada to obtain information about specific accounts for his handlers.
Israeli sources denied any knowledge of the affair. "We only know what we have heard in the media," a Foreign Ministry spokesman said.