Turkish driver taken hostage by ISIL escapes to freedom

Turkish driver taken hostage by ISIL escapes to freedom

Doğan News Agency
Turkish driver taken hostage by ISIL escapes to freedom

İbrahim Kaynak is from Akçakale, a town in the Turkish province of Şanlıurfa that borders Syria.

One of the 31 Turkish truck drivers taken hostage by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) after militants seized the northern Iraqi city of Mosul on June 11 has escaped his captors.

İbrahim Kaynak arrived home in the town of Akçakale in the southeastern Turkish province of Şanlıurfa on June 14, after passing through the Habur border crossing late June 13.

Kaynak said he had been stopped by ISIL militants near Mosul and taken to a depot as a hostage, along with 20 other Turkish truckers. He was the only hostage who managed to escape.

"Most of the drivers were hungry and weak. I was the only one remaining strong. All militants left the depot after we heard explosions in central Mosul. I took the opportunity and jumped over the wall," he said.

Kaynak added that his truck left outside the depot was inoperable, but one of his friends, who was watching the area while he was in captivity, came to pick him up when he saw that Kaynak had escaped.

"He took me to the peshmarga [Iraqi Kurdish security forces] territories one kilometer away. Thanks to God, I am with my family again. God help the drivers who stayed there," Kaynak said.

Eighty Turks, including 49 members of the Mosul consulate, are still being held captive in northern Iraq four days after they were taken hostage by ISIL.