In an August report, an ISIL spokesman had threatened to "liberate" Istanbul.
The youth wing of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party
(PKK) has claimed to have killed an operative of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Istanbul.
“Our security forces in the Başakşehir neighborhood have conducted an armed operation against ISIL, killing a gang leader named Hikmet, who was in charge of an [ISIL] organization,” the Patriotic Revolutionary Youth Movement (YDG-H) stated in a tweet on Aug. 30. The same Twitter account later added on Aug. 31 that two ISIL operatives were also injured in the same attack.
Unidentified YDG-H members told Fırat, a news agency that is known to be close to the PKK, that the targeted ISIL cell was being used to recruit young men from Istanbul to be sent to Syria and Iraq as jihadists.
“There were five or six people in a car that was leaving the cell house. Two or three gang members were also shot in our pinpoint operation,” they were quoted as saying.
The report could not be independently verified and Turkish officials have yet to comment.