12 Trinidadians are deported from Turkey for having ISIS connections
At least 12 Trinidad and Tobago nationals are due to arrive home on Friday after they were deported from Turkey, but the police say they have no indication as to whether or not they are linked to nationals travelling to the Middle East to fight for the terrorist group, ISIS.
We expect 12 persons who are reportedly deported from Turkey. They will be escorted here by Turkish agents. We do have information regarding some of the 12 persons, some of the information we have to verify. We have had limited information from the Turkish authorities, said Deputy Assistant Commissioner of Police, Wayne Dick.
He told a news conference that while the 12 nationals ‘at this point will not be arrested since they would be considered just 12 persons who are deported from Turkey.
We have limited information from the Turkish authorities and we are hoping when they get here through continued efforts and investigations, we will learn why they have been deported, he said.
Last August, a Turkish newspaper reported that nine Trinidad and Tobago nationals were detained after the police nabbed a Syrian man suspected of attempting to smuggle them into southern Turkey to join the ISIS terrorist organisation.
The Daily Sabah reported that the police had stopped a car with a license plate from southern Mersin province when it entered south-central Adana province with 10 people, including the driver and nine Trinidad and Tobago citizens.
The paper reported that after an initial probe, police found the Syrian man, Asem H, was trying to take the Trinidad and Tobago nationals to the war-torn country, where they would have been recruited by ISIS.
The Syrian suspect was remanded in custody after an appearance at a local court, while the nine Trinidad and Tobago nationals were transferred to Adana Provincial Migration Management for deportation procedures, the report said.
This is not the first time that Trinidad and Tobago nationals associated with ISIS have been held by Turkish forces.
In January last year, the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet reported that four Trinidad and Tobago nationals were among 961 foreign members of ISIS captured by Turkish forces.
The newspaper referred to a list published in December of people captured from 57 countries.
In April last year, the Trinidad and Tobago government said it was now red-flagging as potential threats to national security the families of men and women who went to Syria to fight for ISIS.
An opposition legislator also claimed that as many as 400 nationals had been indoctrinated, radicalised and trained by ISIS.
But National Security Minister Edmund Dillon said then that the blacklist contained 105 descriptions of men, women and children who have gone to Syria.
ACP Dick told reporters that there has been no information from the Turkish authorities indicating that the 12 are linked to terrorist groups or activities.
Source: Jamaica Observer