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Turkey arrests Britons trying to illegally cross into Syria

Turkey easy transit for Brits ISIL recruits

The Turkish army has arrested nine British nationals trying to cross illegally into war-torn Syria.

A Turkish army statement says the arrest took place near Hatay province close to the border with Syria.  It is not clear why the group that reportedly includes three men, two women and four children, was trying to cross the frontier.

British nationals arrested while trying to illegally cross into Syria (Photo Telegraph)

Sky News has quoted Turkish MP Mehmet Ali Ediboglu as saying that the detainees are being held at a paramilitary outpost and could ‘probably’ be deported.

This is the largest single group that has been stopped close to the Syrian border by Turkey that has been on the forefront of fueling insurgency in the Arab country.

Last month, three young British men were detained at the Turkey-Syria border after police received tip-off that they were planning to cross into Syria. Their motives, too, were not confirmed but the ISIL Takfiri terrorists believe to have been using social media to attract Britons. More recently a team of nine British medical students of Sudanese origin joined the group.

“It is very clear that there are a lot of grey areas and this unfortunately one could say is almost deliberate. We see the huge propaganda in promoting those rebels who stand against the Assad government as freedom fighters and there is no clarification as to what sort of opposition, is it acceptable, what sort of opposition is unacceptable?”, Massoud Shadjare from Islamic Human Rights Commission in London told Press TV.

Shadjare said that all weapons, logistics, finances that the West and its regional allies sent to support the so-called moderates in Syria, have ended up in the hands of ISIL.

Thousands Europeans who joined the ranks of ISIL, a large number of them crossed through Turkey. The Metropolitan Police counter-terrorism command says an estimated 600 Britons including women, many of them teenagers, have joined the terrorist group.

“It’s quite clear that there are failures on many levels. There’s a failure of intelligence services who have got all the power that they need but I think what is in reality happening they are scoping in such a wide section of the society, everyone is under surveillance. So they are not able to concentrate on those who they really need to concentrate”, Shadjare added.

“I think the governmental policies of anti-terrorism and indeed fighting radicalization projects have all backfired because they are in many ways alienating people”, he concluded.

Turkey is a partner to anti-Syria plot  but Ankara has been facing criticism ever since three British teenagers crossed into Syria. Shamima Begum, Amira Abase and Kadiza Sultana from the Bethnal Green academy in east London flew to Turkey on 17 February and subsequently crossed the border into Syria.

In the blame game, Ankara, however, accuses European countries of failing to prevent would-be terrorists in the first place.


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