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Former chief of MOSSAD: Arab Spring is not a spring anymore

07 August 2012 16:42 (Last updated 07 August 2012 16:50)
Danny Yatom: Arab Spring is not a spring anymore, it radicalizes the region and brings Islamists to power.

JERUSALEM (AA) - August 7, 2012 - Danny Yatom, former chief of MOSSAD, has said, "Arab Spring is not a spring anymore, it radicalizes the region and brings Islamists to power."

Former Director of the MOSSAD security service, Danny Yatom, spoke to AA at his private office in Tel Aviv and touched on Arab Spring, violence in Syria and said that he would not call it 'spring' anymore.
He underlined the death of 20 thousand people in Syria and claimed that apart from the liberal government coming to power, radical Islamists came into power in Libya and continued saying, "Muslim Brotherhood came into power and the region became more radical. Who knows what will happen to Syria when Al-Assad leaves. Maybe Muslim Brotherhood will come into power there or a more democratic structure will appear. It is hard to say anything at the moment."
Also touching on the possible dispute between Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi and soldiers, Yatom said that the soldiers would try to keep their power and the process was fragile. 
Replying to AA's question about what kind of position that Israel would take against the developments, Yatom said, "I would like to reply to this question as an Israeli citizen. There are serious changes around us, there are serious challenges towards the security, there are cells of al-Qaeda in the uninhabited part of Sinai peninsula, they are trying to infiltrate from our borders. I do not know if Egypt will take the power back in the region. Also, we should not forget about Hamas. Hamas which wants to destroy Israel came out from Muslim Brotherhood."
Danny Yatom focused on the conflicts in Syria too and brought forward that without a certain time that Al-Assad will come down. Yatom highlighted that the Free Syrian Army gains ground gradually in the country and stated that the topic of nowadays is, who would be replacing Al-Assad.
Yatom said, "Democratic structure might take place or radicals, Muslim Brotherhood might come into power. There might be a conflict between Alewis, Druses, Sunnis. Honestly, the region has become more radical than how it used to be."
According to former MOSSAD security chief, as long as there are not any attacks from Syria, Israel does not intervene. However, Yatom said that in the case of Hezbollah possesses the chemical weapons of Syria, Israel may hit Syria via air operations.
He supported that Israel tracks Syria closely from the intelligence point of view. He stressed that the Turkish National Intelligence Organization tracks Syria closely too and if anything goes wrong, it will threaten Turkey directly. 
Former Director of the MOSSAD identified Turkey-Israel relations as a "tragedy". He stated that the rejected apology of Israel is not the main subject at the moment and said that relations should be repaired as soon as possible.

Reporting by Taner Aydin

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