Turkish court jails British man over ‘terror offenses’

Turkish court jails British man over ‘terror offenses’

AYDIN - Demirören News Agency
Turkish court jails British man over ‘terror offenses’

A court in the western province of Aydın on Sept. 14 sentenced a British citizen, who was unidentified, to seven and a half years in jail for alleged links to the illegal-PKK affiliated YPG in Syria. 

The British citizen and his Bulgarian girlfriend of Turkish origin were detained in July 2017 while on holiday in the Didim province of Aydın as part of an investigation against the PKK/YPG. 

Police also seized their mobile phones and other digital materials. 

In his testimony, the British national said he went to Syria in 2015 to provide medical assistance to the YPG.

The suspect added that he stayed in Syria for three months and received arms training there, but never engaged in any clashes. 

He also told the Turkish authorities that he later returned to the United Kingdom and 10 days prior to their detention, he came to Turkey for holiday. 

According to the authorities, the suspects shared pictures on social media in YPG uniforms. 

He was later released on probation but has been prevented from leaving the country. 

Prosecutors have taken legal action and have demanded up to 10 years in prison, accusing the man of being “a member of an armed terror group,” while accusing his girlfriend of “making terror propaganda.” 

On Sept. 14, the court sentenced the British man, who did not attend the hearing for health reasons, to seven and a half years in jail for “membership of a terrorist organization.” 

His girlfriend, who had already gone to the U.K., was sentenced to one year and 10 months in jail for “making terror propaganda.” But the court ruled to defer the announcement of the verdict.

The court decided not to lift the travel ban on the British man until the finalization of the verdict.

Meanwhile, Turkish National Intelligence Service (MİT) on Sept. 14 brought to Turkey nine YPG/PKK militants, who were behind the attack that killed two Turkish soldiers during Operation Olive Branch in northern Syria, according to Hatay governor.

The militants were caught in a joint operation by MİT and the Turkish gendarmerie forces in Syria’s Afrin city and brought to southern Hatay province Erdal Ata said.

They were involved in Jan. 23, 2018 terror attack in Rajo area of Afrin that left Lt. Oguz Kaan Usta and Specialist Sergeant Mehmet Muratdagi dead.