Israel: Mossad vulture part of academic study

A griffon vulture

A griffon vulture

Israeli authorities have said that a bird captured by Saudi Arabia on suspicion of being a Mossad spy is part of an academic study.

Less than a month after the governor of South Sinai accused the Israeli intelligence organisation of orchestrating a fatal shark attack in the Egyptian resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh, Saudi officials have seized a vulture equipped with a GPS chip.

According to reports in the Israeli media the bird was discovered after it flew into Saudi territory, at which point concerned residents alerted security officials.

However Israel said the bird was blameless and was being tracked for research into the species’ migratory patterns.

Last updated: 3:52pm, January 4 2011