Turkey urges US to drop case against gold trader Reza Zarrab

Turkish President Recep Erdogan claims the case against Zarrab is politically motivated and ultimately intended to bolster US-based dissident Fethullah Gulen, who seeks to overthrow Erdogan's government.

by

    A Turkish gold trader charged with conspiring to evade US sanctions against Iran will not go on trial in New York this week.

    Reza Zarrab dropped out of sight in the two months leading up to his scheduled trial.

    However, there is widespread speculation that Zarrab has flipped and is now cooperating with the prosecution. He was abruptly released from prison in early November and his whereabouts are publically unknown.

    The US lawyer says he remains in federal custody. And that has led to speculation that he entered the witness protection programme.

    This has prompted Turkey's prime minister to suggest Zarrab has reached a plea deal with US authorities.

    President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey maintains this is a politically motivated prosecution intended to discredit and ultimately overthrow his government on behalf of Fethullah Gulen, an Islamic leader who lives in Pennsylvania.

    Al Jazeera's Shihab Rattansi reports from Washington.


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Many Pentecostal churches in the Niger Delta offer to deliver people from witchcraft and possession - albeit for a fee.

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    Prince Philip has done the world an extraordinary service by exposing the racist hypocrisy of "Western civilisation".

    Why a hipster, vegan, green tech economy is not sustainable

    Why a hipster, vegan, green tech economy is not sustainable

    Improving eco-efficiency within a capitalist growth-oriented system will not save the environment.