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Turkey: Security Forces Arrest Ten ISIS-linked Foreigners

Turkey: Security Forces Arrest Ten ISIS-linked Foreigners

Wednesday, 22 May, 2019 - 11:30
A Turkish military stands guard near the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey. REUTERS/Murad Sezer

Turkish counter terrorism forces on Tuesday arrested 10 foreigners suspected of links to an ISIS operative in the central province of Kayseri.

Security sources said simultaneous raids were carried in several locations.

Since early 2017, Turkish security forces have arrested more than 4,000 members of the terrorist organization, most of whom were foreigners. Hundreds have since been deported.

Turkish security forces foiled 347 terrorist attacks in 2018 alone, much less when compared to the 697 terrorist attacks thwarted in 2017. In parallel, recent reports shed light on what seems to be a Turkish pro-leniency policy when handling ISIS and al-Qaeda detainees.

These reports showed that most detained foreign militants and their accomplices arrested between 2014 and 2016 on suspicion of involvement in terrorist activities were released shortly after.

Data released by the Turkish Gendarmerie Division covering the period from January 1, 2014 to June 30, 2016 showed that of the 607 detained, 224 were foreigners.

According to reports, most of the suspects officially arrested on charges of association with ISIS and al-Qaeda in Turkey were quickly released by court proceedings and that those convicted were a very little few.

The number of foreign militants arrested in Turkey and who come from Syria and Iraq rose from only 8 in 2014 to 499 in 2015.

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