Security personnel from Israel’s embassy in Kathmandu have arrested an Iranian
who was engaged in surveillance of the embassy in Nepal’s capital
Israel’s Channel 2 and the news website Himalayan reported on
Monday that the Iranian, Mohsin Khosravian, is in police custody, having being
transferred to the Nepalese police force by Israeli security.
to the Himalayan article, based on a Sunday report in the local Annapurna Post,
Nepalese authorities arrested Khosravian on April 13.
The Himalayan cited
Israeli security officials from the embassy who expressed concerns that the
Iranian intended to cause harm to the embassy because “he carried a tourist map
of the Lazimpat area” where the Israeli diplomatic facility is located. The
paper reported that the man stayed in a hotel in the Thamel area of the capital
The Nepal Police’s Central Bureau of Investigation and Special
Bureau initiated an investigation into his activities and possible terrorist
connections due to his “frequent and suspicious visits” to the area of the Israeli Embassy, said the
The Himalayan article noted that Khosravian had hidden his
Iranian passport and used a fake Israeli one and the name Alexander to secure an
“arrival” visa at the Tribhuvan International Airport on April 3.
Annapurna Post said that the Iranian man had lived in Bangkok, Thailand, since
2004, and is married to a Thai woman. The suspicious activity surfaced after
Khosravian’s wife and two Iranian relatives arrived in Kathmandu from Bangkok on
Friday for a meeting with him Khosravian apparently obtained his false Israeli
passport in Kuala Lumpur and, according to the results of the Nepalese
investigation, used his Iranian passport to enter Malaysia on March
The media in Nepal reported that he told authorities that he gave up
his garment business and entered Nepal on his way to Europe to file an asylum
Speaking from Washington, Dr. Matthew Levitt, director of
the Stein Program on Counterterrorism and Intelligence at the Washington
Institute for Near East Policy, told The Jerusalem Post in a telephone interview
on Monday that this type of Iranian surveillance has “been going on for a
while.” It is part of the Iranian government and its proxies’ “ongoing shadow
war with the West over Iran’s nuclear program,” he added.
of Passover, Israel’s National Security Council’s counterterrorism bureau issued
a warning that a global Shi’ite terrorism network made up of Iranian Quds Force
and Hezbollah operatives continues to target Israelis overseas.
bureau has designated 27 countries as being under a travel alert of varying
Turkey, Kenya, Nigeria and Azerbaijan have been classified
under the “ongoing potential threat” category, which is the third most severe
Dozens of terrorist attacks around the world have been
thwarted this year, a bureau source said in March, adding that Iran and
Hezbollah have clearly divided up attacks between them. Iranian agents target
Israeli embassies and official state symbols – as in New Delhi in 2012.
Hezbollah, on the other hand, attempts the murder of less-protected Israeli
tourists – as occurred in Burgas last year, resulting in the deaths of five
Israelis and a Bulgarian bus driver.
“Shi’ite terrorism is a threat to
Israeli citizens and Diaspora Jews,” the NSC said in its warning. “The threat is
being sponsored by Iran and Hezbollah. Over the past two years, there has been
an increased effort to carry out attacks. We are identifying a systematic
campaign operating with the greatest vigor... They are fully coordinated.
It is one axis.”
Additionally, Israel has been in touch with foreign
governments and local police officials in countries such as Cyprus (where a
Hezbollah operative was convicted last month of plotting to murder Israeli
tourists), Greece, Turkey, Thailand and India.
The source said countries
hosting large numbers of Israeli tourists have been contacted by Israel
requesting a beefedup security presence. One such meeting was held this past
February in India, where some 45,000 Israeli tourists head every
India and Nepal are popular destinations for Israeli
The counterterrorism source said in March that the bureau was
not telling Israelis to stay at home, but rather to exercise caution as they
enjoy their overseas vacations.