152 Daesh ter­ror­ist at­tacks foiled, tons of ex­plo­sives con­fis­cated

Daily Sabah (Turkey) - - Front Page - IS­TAN­BUL / DAILY SABAH

se­cu­rity forces have foiled 152 ter­ror­ist at­tacks by Daesh ter­ror­ists in the past year, In­te­rior Min­is­ter Sü­ley­man Soylu said Wed­nes­day. “We pre­vented 152 ter­ror­ist at­tacks by Daesh in 2020, and con­fis­cated 26.8 tons of ex­plo­sives ... We also foiled ter­ror­ist at­tacks by the PKK and DHKP-C,” Soylu said in a live broad­cast on TGRT Haber, adding that Turk­ish se­cu­rity forces work around the clock to en­sure se­cu­rity. In 2013, Turkey be­came one of the first coun­tries to de­clare Daesh a ter­ror­ist group. The coun­try has since been at­tacked by Daesh ter­ror­ists mul­ti­ple times with at least 10 sui­cide bomb­ings, seven bomb at­tacks and four armed at­tacks killing 315 peo­ple and in­jur­ing hundreds more. In re­sponse, Turkey launched anti-ter­ror op­er­a­tions at home and abroad to pre­vent fur­ther at­tacks. In the fight against the PKK ter­ror group, Soylu said 162 PKK ter­ror­ists have laid down their arms so far this year as a re­sult of per­sua­sion ef­forts by po­lice and gen­darmerie forces. The num­ber of ter­ror­ists who sur­ren­dered through per­sua­sion ef­forts in the last three years ex­ceeded 700, he said. “No other coun­try uti­lizes un­manned aerial ve­hi­cles (UAVs) better than us,” Soylu said, in ref­er­ence to the use of drones in the fight against the PKK ter­ror­ists.

IN­TE­RIOR Min­is­ter Soylu re­ferred to UAVs as the “hands, feet, arms and eyes” of se­cu­rity forces, high­light­ing their in­dis­pens­abil­ity in the fight against ter­ror­ism.

On the long-run­ning sit-in in Turkey by fam­i­lies whose chil­dren have been kid­napped by PKK ter­ror­ists, Soylu said these moth­ers are not only try­ing to save their chil­dren but are also strug­gling against ter­ror­ism and the desta­bi­liza­tion of the re­gion by the ter­ror­ist groups.

He an­nounced that the 17th fam­ily would re­unite with their child, Serkan Akkuş, who had been re­cruited by the PKK and re­cently laid down arms and sur­ren­dered to Turk­ish se­cu­rity forces. Af­ter Soylu’s an­nounce­ment, the re­union has taken place yes­ter­day as the protest­ing fam­ily wel­com­ing their child.

The protest be­gan on Sept. 3 last year in south­east­ern Di­yarbakır prov­ince, when Fevziye Çetinkaya, Remziye Akkoyun and Ayşegül Biçer said their chil­dren had been forcibly re­cruited by the PKK ter­ror­ists.

The sit-in out­side the of­fice of the Peo­ples’ Demo­cratic Party (HDP) – which the gov­ern­ment ac­cuses of hav­ing links to the YPG/PKK ter­ror group – has been grow­ing ev­ery day.

The griev­ing de­mon­stra­tors have vowed to con­tinue the sit-in un­til ev­ery fam­ily is reunited with their chil­dren. Of­fend­ers in Turkey linked to ter­ror­ist groups who sur­ren­der are el­i­gi­ble for pos­si­ble sen­tence re­duc­tions un­der a re­pen­tance law.

PKK CON­DUCTS DRUG TRAF­FICK­ING

The in­te­rior min­is­ter also touched upon the di­rect links be­tween the PKK and drug traf­fick­ing. “The PKK man­ages a sig­nif­i­cant part of the drug trade in Europe,” Soylu said, adding that al­though Euro­pean coun­tries seem to be in­dif­fer­ent now, they will soon come beg­ging Turkey for help against the ter­ror­ists.

Soylu had pre­vi­ously stated that the PKK ter­ror­ist group con­trols 80% of the drug trade in Europe, earn­ing around $1.5 bil­lion (TL 11.5 bil­lion) per year. Turkey’s fight against drug traf­fick­ing came as a ma­jor blow to the PKK’s fundrais­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties, much of which de­pends on drug traf­fick­ing.

In its more than 40-year ter­ror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a ter­ror­ist or­ga­ni­za­tion by Turkey, the U.S. and the Euro­pean Union – has been re­spon­si­ble for the deaths of 40,000 peo­ple, in­clud­ing women, chil­dren and in­fants.

WANTED PKK TER­ROR­IST DE­TAINED

Mean­while, Turk­ish po­lice de­tained a wanted PKK ter­ror­ist, known as the group’s “ex­pert sabo­teur,” as he was at­tempt­ing to carry out a sui­cide at­tack with an im­pro­vised ex­plo­sive de­vice in north­ern Turkey’s Amasya prov­ince, a state­ment by the gov­er­nor’s of­fice in eastern Erz­in­can prov­ince said yes­ter­day.

Ter­ror­ist Ah­met Her­dem, code-named “Baver-Çek­tar,” who was listed un­der the orange cat­e­gory of the In­te­rior Min­istry’s wanted list, was caught in the act in an oper­a­tion co­or­di­nated by the in­tel­li­gence unit of Erz­in­can Po­lice Direc­torate, in co­op­er­a­tion with po­lice units from Amasya and south­east­ern Şan­lıurfa prov­inces. The In­te­rior Min­istry’s wanted list is di­vided into five color codes: red as the most wanted, fol­lowed by blue, green, orange and gray.

The sus­pect at­tempted to blow him­self up as po­lice caught him, the gov­er­nor’s of­fice said. The de­tained ter­ror­ist was re­spon­si­ble for the PKK’s ac­tiv­i­ties in the ru­ral ar­eas of eastern Tunceli prov­ince and was be­hind sev­eral ter­ror­ist at­tacks. He also pro­vided train­ing for other PKK sui­cide bombers, the state­ment said.

Se­cu­rity forces found two fake iden­tity doc­u­ments on the 33-year-old ter­ror­ist when they de­tained him and con­fis­cated weapons and am­mu­ni­tion buried in Erz­in­can prov­ince. The ter­ror­ist was ar­rested on Sept. 18.

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