Police detain key ISIL militant in Istanbul
ISTANBULPolice have detained a key Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militant in Istanbul for the fourth time as part of an ongoing operation in the northwestern province of Sakarya.
“Abu Hanzala,” code-named Halis Bayancuk, was detained and arrested several times previously. The latest detention on May 30 was carried out as a part of an investigation launched by the Sakarya Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office.
Police detained Bayancuk after determining that he was in Istanbul and he was taken to Sakarya by anti-terror police.
Back in 2015, Bayancuk and his wife were arrested after police raided their home and seized a number of ISIL-linked documents, both digital and non-digital. He was released in March 2016.
He was once again detained in March 2017 after threatening personnel of the Istanbul Governor’s Office via a video broadcast online, after a meeting he had planned to attend was canceled by the authorities.
He had also been arrested in 2011 and 2014 for “being a member of al-Qaeda” and was released both times after serving a couple of months in jail.
Previous footage showed him threatening the Turkish authorities in a speech he made during a picnic in Istanbul’s Ömerli district.