Three get aggravated life terms over 2016 Istanbul bombing
An Istanbul court on Jan. 31 gave aggravated life sentences and an additional 329 years in jail to three people in connection to the deadly 2016 bombing in Istanbul’s historic Sultanahmet area, which killed 12 people.
The verdict was issued by the Istanbul 14th High Criminal Court, where a total of 26 suspects – including Syrian and Iraqi nationals – were appearing, state-run Anadolu Agency has reported.
The defendants, including Hasan al-Mayouf, Fawzi Mohamed Ali and Halil Dervis, got jail terms on charges of “violating the constitution” and “possessing illegal materials.”
Abdulrahman Faiz Rasit, another defendant, was given six years and three months in jail for being a member of a terrorist organization, but he was released considering the time he served in jail.
According to the indictment, Ali brought the bomb to Istanbul in a vehicle and then gave the bomb to fugitive suspect Rasheed Alabdallah Algaagan, who later handed it to the suicide bomber Nabil Fadli.
On Jan. 12, 2016, Fadli blew himself up, killing 12 people - mostly German tourists - and injuring 16 others in Istanbul’s Sultanahmet district in an attack blamed on the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
The Sultanahmet district, located on the European side of Istanbul, is home to the city’s most popular tourist sites and contains hundreds of hotels and restaurants.
In another case, a court in the western province of Kocaeli on Jan. 31 arrested a suspected ISIL member, for whom a red warrant had been issued by Interpol.
The suspect was caught by police during a road check in the province, Anadolu Agency reported. The suspect was found to be in possession of a fake identity card.
Over 300 people have lost their lives in ISIL-claimed attacks in Turkey, with the group targeting civilians in suicide bomb, rocket and gun attacks.