Turkey detains more suspected ISIL members
DHA photoAt least 13 suspected members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) were detained in operations across Turkey on Aug. 12.
Police detained the suspects in coordinated dawn raids in the capital Ankara, Istanbul, the province of Hatay near the Syrian border, and the Central Anatolian province of Kırıkkale, Anadolu Agency reported.
Police are still hunting for another three suspected ISIL members. Twelve of the detained suspects were seized in Ankara, while one was detained in Hatay. The police are searching for the remaining suspects in Istanbul, Kırıkkale and Ankara.
The authorities had announced on Aug. 11 the arrest of 23 foreign nationals, including women and children, seeking to cross into Syria to join ISIL via the southeastern border town of Kilis. The suspects were reportedly from China, Indonesia, Russia and Ukraine.
Turkey is currently pressing a two-pronged “anti-terror” offensive against ISIL militants in Syria and outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants in northern Iraq and the southeast, amid a wave of violence inside Turkey. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Aug. 12 said “effective operations” have been carried out against ISIL jihadists, although Ankara has so far concentrated the campaign mainly against the PKK.
Turkish authorities said last week they had arrested more than 1,300 suspects since late last month in police raids nationwide targeting suspected members of the PKK, ISIL, and the Marxist Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party Front (DHKP-C). The overwhelming majority of those arrested so far have been from the PKK.