Turkish authorities detained seven Islamic State terror suspects for planning attacks
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Turkish security forces in Ankara detained Tuesday seven Daesh terror suspects, accused of planning attacks on national holidays in Turkey, local media and officials said.
They were reportedly planning attacks on the upcoming Republic Day on Thursday and during the Nov. 10 ceremonies commemorating the death of the founder of the modern Turkish state, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.
Special forces police raided the homes of the suspects, two of whom were believed to have played an “active role” in armed combat in Syria. Another individual was accused of being an “executioner” for the terrorist group.
The Ankara chief public prosecutor’s office said seven arrest warrants for the suspected Daesh members were issued Tuesday and they were all detained in two separate investigations. It did not, however, provide any further detail or reveal the suspect’s nationalities.
In 2013, Turkey became one of the first countries to declare Daesh a terrorist group.
The country has since been attacked by Daesh terrorists multiple times, with at least 10 suicide bombings, seven bomb attacks and four armed attacks that killed 315 people and injured hundreds more. The last attack was in January 2017 when a gunman killed 39 people at an elite Istanbul nightclub during New Year celebrations.
In response, Turkey launched anti-terror operations at home and abroad to prevent further attacks.
Meanwhile, it was also reported Monday that in 2017 the German authorities offered help to a suspected Daesh terrorist traveling to Turkey without informing the Turkish authorities but the plan failed after he was refused a visa, German news agency DPA has reported.
Abdullah al-Haj Hasan, 20, who stabbed a person to death and seriously injured another in Dresden earlier this month, has long been under surveillance by German security agencies, according to leaked internal reports.
The Syrian suspect was identified as a “potentially dangerous person” by German authorities months after he applied for asylum in 2016, the media reported.
Authorities offered him help in 2017 to travel to Turkey where he could stay with his sister, without informing Turkish officials beforehand about his suspected links to Daesh to avoid any problems but the plan failed when his visa was turned down.
According to the DPA report, German authorities were planning to inform their Turkish counterparts about the case file on Hasan after he arrived in Turkey.
Ankara has long criticized European countries’ lack of cooperation on security issues and their reluctance to take serious measures against foreign fighters.
Since the beginning of the Syrian civil war in 2011, nearly 5,000 foreign fighters traveled from the European Union to conflict areas in Syria and Iraq, according to Europol estimates.
Source: Daily Sabah