Turkish authorities have "cleared a renegade bird captured in the Ağın district of the eastern province of Elazığ on suspicions of working for Israel's state-of-the-art intelligence agency," the Hurriyet newspaper reported Friday.
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According to the report by the Turkish newspaper, residents of Altınavya village became suspicious that the little kestrel could be more than a bird that lost its way when they found it wore a metallic ring stamped with the words "24311 Tel Avivunia Israel," and delivered it to the district governorate.
The bird Turkey suspected was carrying microchips
Local authorities submitted the bird to careful medical examinations to ensure that it did not carry microchips. An X-ray test carried out at Fırat University in Elazığ finally convinced the authorities that the bird was "just a simple specimen of Israeli wildlife," Hurriyet reported, adding that the bird had been registered under the name "Israeli spy" by medical personnel.
Tagging birds is a common practice in ornithology as it helps scientists track bird migration routes.
"Following the tests, the authorities decided not to press official charges and the falsely accused bird was free to fly away," the report said.
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