Today’s Zaman reports: Turkey’s intelligence agency has been involved in escorting over 60 Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) extremist militants over the Turkish border into Syria, according to a report by the Nokta weekly.
The report, published on Aug. 3, claims that the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) escorted over 60 militants to Syria who wanted to join ISIL. It states that the applicants had previously been incarcerated after being apprehended by the Turkish police for suspected involvement in criminal activities pertaining to terrorism. It is alleged that MİT then collected the applicants from prison and brought them to ISIL handlers in Syria via the Akçakale border gate.
Nokta claims that after their apprehension by Turkish law enforcement agencies between April and September 2014, the prisoners should have been deported but were not. The weekly claims that the prisoners were delivered to MİT agents with the knowledge and authorization of Şanlıurfa Police Chief Eyüp Pınarbaşı.
The report also claims that on the day and hour of the delivery of the future ISIL fighters to their handlers, the CCTV cameras were turned off and border personnel were ushered away from the meeting spot.
Nokta’s report provides all 60 of the ISIL militants’ names, nationalities and ages, with some fighters even as young as 12 years old. Two members of the group were female, while many members of the 60-strong group were determined to be of Russian or Turkic ethnicity. The group also included American, Swedish, German, French, Turkmen, Chechen, Ingush and East Turkistan fighters. [Continue reading…]