35 ISIL suspects detained across Turkey
AA photoAnti-terrorism police in Istanbul detained 35 people suspected of links to the Islamic State Iraq and Levant (ISIL) on Feb. 22, state-run Anadolu Agency has reported.
The suspects were taken into custody following simultaneous raids on 41 homes in two low-income Istanbul neighborhoods.
There was no information on the suspects or their nationalities.
Last year, Turkey suffered a series of deadly attacks carried out by ISIL and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), prompting officials to step up anti-terrorism operations across the country. Some 750 people with alleged ISIL links were detained in a major police sweep in 29 Turkish provinces earlier in February.
ISIL claimed responsibility for a New Year’s mass shooting at an Istanbul nightclub that killed 39 people.
Some 820 ISIL suspects were detained in nationwide simultaneous operations that were launched on Jan. 30, the Interior Ministry said Feb. 6.
Police on Feb. 5 detained 748 suspects in operations.
Some 72 suspects were previously detained in week-long operations against ISIL. The police seized a number of organizational materials, digital materials, two unlicensed pistols, four rifles and 372 cartridges.
The police said in a written statement that they had been making preparations against the suspects before conducting simultaneous raids in 29 provinces.
The suspects allegedly had connections to Syria and Iraq, where the organization is most active. Those detained were allegedly planning terror attacks in Turkey – which has reportedly become the group’s most important target – and conducting propaganda activities for recruitment purposes.