Did This CIA Agent Try to Overthrow a Foreign Government? Who Is Graham Fuller?

By Cristina Maza On 12/1/17 Newsweek

Turkey issued an arrest warrant on Friday for former CIA officer Graham Fuller after accusing him of trying to overthrow its government in a coup.

The warrant accuses Fuller, a former vice chairman of the CIA’s National Intelligence Council, of “attempting to overthrow the government of the Republic of Turkey” and “obtaining state information that must be kept secret for political and military espionage purposes,” among other charges, according to Turkish media.

Experts, however, say Turkey is attempting to get back at the U.S. for bringing a Turkish citizen to court. The U.S. is currently trying a Turkish banker for allegedly helping Iran launder money and violate U.S. sanctions. This week, Reza Zarrab, a key witness in the case, implicated Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, claiming that he instructed Turkish banks to participate in the multimillion-dollar laundering scheme. The case has created friction between the U.S. and Turkey, and this led to the charges against Fuller, some experts say. 

"This clearly seems to be a case of tit-for-tat—you come after our people, we’ll go after yours," Chris Meserole, a Middle East expert at the Brookings Institution, told Newsweek

"The idea that a former high-ranking official would be involved in planning the Istanbul coup attempt strikes me as pretty outlandish. In light of the timing, the accusations against Fuller are almost certainly being driven by politics, not facts." 

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