“What I saw and heard was sort of the end of the conversation — it’s not entirely clear what transpired because of that — but it looks as if there was at least some strong suggestion by one or more of the Americans present at the meeting that we would be able — the United States would be able — through them, to be able to get hold of Gulen, the rival for Turkey’s political situation.”
Former CIA Director James Woolsey
According to James Woolsey, former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn met with representatives of the Turkish government in September 2016 to discuss ways of sending — illegally — Fethullah Gulen back to Turkey to face charges. Follow us on Twitter: @Intel_Today
President Erdogan has accused U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen to be the mastermind of last summer’s failed coup in Turkey and wants him to be extradited.
People close to President Erdogan’s administration have paid Mike Flynn’s consulting company more than US$ 500,000 to help with this matter. The former National Security Advisor had in fact written an opinion piece arguing that Gulen should be deported.
US-Turkey Extradition Treaty
During his visit to Turkey on August 24, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden made it clear that such request is a legal matter, not one for the POTUS to decide.
The United States and Turkey have an extradition Treaty. The formal process for dealing with extradition requires that Turkey provide fist solid evidence of Gulen’s involvement. (Last Saturday, the head of the German BND Agency — Bruno Kahl — told DER SPIEGEL that there is no evidence of Gulen’s involvement.)
Moreover, the crimes alleged by Turkey must be “extraditable” acts under the U.S.-Turkey Treaty, which spells out specific extraditable acts. Treason — such as that implied by Erdogan’s demand for Gulen’s extradition — does not appear in the Treaty. Therefore, it appears that the legal US extradition system does not allow for Gulen’s extradition to Turkey.
Flynn Intel Group — The September 19 2016 Meeting
On September 19 2016, Flynn — as a representative of Flynn Intel Group — met with senior representatives of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government, including the son-in-law of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu — according to the WSJ.
“You might call it brainstorming. But it was brainstorming about a very serious matter that would pretty clearly be a violation of law.”
“It was a serious and troubling discussion but it did not, repeat not, in my portion of being in the room, rise to a level of being a specific plan to undertake a felonious act.”
Former CIA Director added later — in a CNN Interview — that:
“Those present discussed sending Fethullah Gulen, a Muslim leader who Erdogan has accused of being behind a failed military coup to overthrow him, back to Turkey to face charges — possibly outside the legal US extradition system.”
“It looks as if there was at least some strong suggestion by one or more of the Americans present at the meeting that we would be able, the United States would be able, through them, to be able to get hold of Gulen, the rival for Turkey’s political situation.”
Whatever happened exactly is not known, but it was sufficiently worrisome for Woolsey to inform immediately US officials.
“It was suspicious, it was concerning and I felt I need to say something about it… Lot of discussion to put Gulen out of action.”
For reasons explained above, an ‘extradition’ of Gulen could only occurred outside the legal US extradition system.
In August 2016, Flynn Intel Group entered into a contract with Inovo — a consulting firm based in the Netherlands — at the request of people close to Erdogan’s government. The work focused on Mr. Fethullah Gulen.
A few days before the meeting, Flynn consulting company was paid $200k by Inovo. A few days after the meeting, Inovo BV Payments paid $185k to Flynn Intel Group.
The “dead of night” Operation
The “dead of night” operation was intended to circumvent normal U.S. extradition laws, Woolsey said. The meeting took place on Sep. 19, and Woolsey said he arrived late only to be startled and alarmed that the discussion was treading into potentially illegal territory.
The plan, according to Woolsey, was “a covert step in the dead of night to whisk this guy away.” [RAW STORY]
July 15 2016 — Attempted coup in Turkey. Ankara claims Gulen, who has lived in self-imposed exile in the US since 1999, masterminded the failed putsch. Extradition requested. Turkey Coup: “CIA Plotters’ Meeting” in Büyükada
August 2016 — Flynn Intel Group entered into a contract with Inovo, a consulting firm based in the Netherlands. The work focused on Mr. Fethullah Gulen and charter schools in the United States that are associated with Gulen.
Aug 15 2016 — Presidential Candidate donald Trump tweets: “I’ve got fresh evidence 13 CIA senior officers helped in Turkey Failed Coup. I will divulge the names in the coming days.” Trump and the Attempted Coup in Turkey : “13 CIA senior officers helped in Failed Coup”
Aug 24 2016 — U.S. Vice President Joe Biden visited Turkey. Biden made it clear that an extradition request is a legal matter, not one for the POTUS to decide.
Sep 9 2016 — Inovo BV Payments to Flynn Intel Group $200k
Sept 19 2016 — Flynn met with senior representatives of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government
Oct 10 2016 — Inovo BV Payments to Flynn Intel Group $185k
Nov 8 2016 — Suspicions about Flynn’s ties to the Turkish government were sparked by an op-ed he wrote in the Hill
Nov 10 2016 — Mike Flynn calling for the extradition of Gulen
Nov 15 2016 — Inovo BV Payments to Flynn Intel Group $145k
Nov 17 2016 — President-elect Trump intends to pick Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn to be his National Security Advisor
Jan 5 2017 — “Effective immediately, Ambassador Woolsey is no longer a Senior Advisor to President-Elect Trump or the Transition.” Woolsey said on CNN that he did not want to “fly under false colors” any longer.
Feb 14 2017 — National Security Adviser Mike Flynn has resigned.
March 8 2017 — Flynn Intel Group Inc filed retroactive documents with the Department of Justice to register as a foreign agent.
March 24 2017 — WSJ breaks the news of the Set 19 meeting (Woolsey)
Turkey’s failed coup — July 15 2016
Rogue soldiers commandeered tanks, warplanes and helicopters, attacking parliament and attempting to overthrow the government.
There has been speculation — widely believed in Turkey — that the CIA was behind the Coup.
RELATED POST: Turkey Coup: “CIA Plotters’ Meeting” in Büyükada
But some analysts have also suggested that the Turkish government initiated a pseudo-coup in order to legitimate a crackdown on opponents. Bruno Kahl — Head of the BND — does not think this theory to be correct.
SPIEGEL: What is your explanation for the coup attempt against Erdogan? Was it staged by the government?
Kahl: The coup attempt wasn’t staged by the state. Even before July 15, the government had launched a large wave of purges. That is why elements within the military thought they should quickly launch a coup before they too were purged. But it was too late and they were purged as well.
RELATED POST: GERMANY — BND: “Gulen not behind Turkey coup attempt”
James Woolsey: Michael Flynn discussed sending Erdogan foe back to Turkey
Former Director of Central Intelligence Agency, James Woolsey discusses his encounter at a foreign agency meeting where he overheard former President Trump’s National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn making deals with Turkish officials.
Former CIA director James Woolsey quits Trump transition team — Washington Post Jan 5 2017
Former CIA Director James Woolsey: ” Flynn discussed sending illegally Gulen back to Turkey.”