A Turkish Interior Ministry official said Thursday he had no information about any search warrant for Mr. Metsos, but if one was issued, Turkish police at airports and ports would be on the lookout for him. He spoke on his department’s customary condition of anonymity.
Turkey’s Mediterranean coast is some 960 miles long, making it difficult to control, but Turkish authorities frequently intercept illegal migrants trying to sneak in.
About 25 flights take off daily from northern Cyprus to more than a half-dozen Turkish cities.
The island lies in the far eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea, a mere 45 miles from the southern coast of Turkey, about 110 miles from Syria and 145 miles from Lebanon.
Crossings between northern and southern Cyprus were forbidden until 2003, when both authorities relaxed restrictions. But police on the two sides of the island have no formal cooperation deals, making it easier for smugglers and fugitives to operate.
“As long as occupation continues and we have this situation with the crossing points, there is a string of problems the government is trying to deal with through all legal means,” government spokesman Stefanos Stefanou said.
In the United States, nine others charged in the spying case faced bail hearings Thursday in federal courts in New York, Boston and Alexandria, Virginia.
A tenth defendant, 28-year-old Anna Chapman, was denied bail on Monday. She faces a potential penalty of five years in prison if convicted.
Most of the others are charged with crimes that carry penalties of up to 25 years.
In other notable spy episodes on Cyprus, the stepfather of famous psychic Uri Geller ran a hotel in the mid-1950s that was a front for Israel’s Mossad spy agency, and Geller ran errands for agents.
More recently, former CIA agent Harold James Nicholson — now in prison for espionage — recruited his 24-year-old son Nathaniel to meet Russian agents in cities around the world from 2006 to 2008 to squeeze more money out of them. One of those cities was the Cypriot capital, Nicosia.
Associated Press writer Suzan Fraser in Ankara, Turkey contributed to this report.