ISIL's Turkish bomber brainwashed in this teahouse, brother on run

ISIL's Turkish bomber brainwashed in this teahouse, brother on run

İdris Emen / Arda Akın / Fevzi Kızılkoyun - ADIYAMAN
ISILs Turkish bomber brainwashed in this teahouse, brother on run

The teahouse, called "Islam," was operated by the brother of the suicide bomber in the Adıyaman province. It was closed eight months ago and now serves as an advertising office.

The identity of the suspected Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) suicide bomber who hit Turkey’s southeastern town of Suruç has been confirmed by DNA tests while the exact locations where he was allegedly radicalized have also been discovered.

Şeyh Abdurrahman Alagöz, a 20-year-old university student registered in Adıyaman province, has been identified as the suicide bomber who carried out the deadly July 20 attack at a municipal culture center in Şanlıurfa’s Suruç district, which killed 31 activists planning to cross the border to help rebuild the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobane. 

The minibus driver who brought the suicide bomber to Suruç said he was accompanied by a woman when he took the minibus. 

The family of Alagöz filed a missing report for their son at the Adıyaman Eskisaray Police Center police on Nov. 22, 2014.
The family said their two sons – Şeyh Abdurrahman Alagöz (R) and his brother Yunus Emre Alagöz – were both brainwashed by ISIL and that they feared for their lives. The two brothers were sought for eight months as “missing people linked to terror.”

The young man’s mother, Semüre Alagöz, said her son had gone “abroad” six months ago and returned only 10 days ago, before she lost contact with him. 

“They didn’t tell us where they went or what kind of job they had found. I don’t know whether he joined ISIL. He was a good boy,” the woman said. She added that Yunus was also missing.

Returned from Saudi Arabia

In 2013, Yunus told his family that he had enrolled at Ağrı İbrahim Çeçen University and left Adıyaman. His family, however, received no news from him for months until he abruptly called them to say he was in Saudi Arabia. In 2014, he returned to Adıyaman and took some money from his family to open a teahouse. 

The teahouse, called "Islam" and operated by Yunus, soon began to function as a meeting place and prayer room for radical Islamists in Adıyaman. It was closed down eight months ago by Adıyaman Municipality because it lacked a license. The decision came after the Oct. 6-8, 2014, incidents during which Turkey was convulsed by mass rallies in support of Kobane, said a shop owner next to the teahouse.

The location of the former teahouse in the Bahçelievler neighborhood of Turkey's Adıyaman province

Shop owners in the same street said the people that patronized the teahouse did not pray at the mosque. “They were reciting the adhan [call to prayer] on Friday and were praying in the upper floor inside the teahouse,” said one of the shop owners on the street.

On July 2014, a young man who wanted to rent the building said he would operate an internet café but opened a teahouse instead. In time, many people, both young and old, started to come to the premises, with around 50 people gathering on Fridays for prayer and preaching.

Turkish officials think that the two brothers crossed to Syria via Gaziantep and Kilis in January 2015 and were trained on bombs by ISIL for three months, before returning to Turkey by illegal means in May 2015.

Police are now seeking to find Yunus, who is thought to be preparing for another attack.