News / Middle East

Israeli General Says Al-Qaida's Syria Fighters Set Up in Turkey

Fighters linked to al-Qaida carry their weapons during a parade at the Syrian town of Tel Abyad, near the border with Turkey, Jan. 2, 2014.
Fighters linked to al-Qaida carry their weapons during a parade at the Syrian town of Tel Abyad, near the border with Turkey, Jan. 2, 2014.
Reuters
Some of the al Qaida militants going to fight in Syria have bases in neighboring Turkey and can easily access Europe from the NATO member state, Israel's military intelligence chief said on Wednesday.

Major-General Aviv Kochavi, presenting a map of the Middle East marked with areas of al Qaida presence, told a security conference al Qaida fighters from around the world entered Syria weekly, “but they do not stay” there.

The map showed three al Qaida bases inside Turkey.

A spokesman for the Turkish Foreign Ministry had no immediate comment, but Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has repeatedly denied Turkey is providing shelter or backing to al Qaida-linked groups in Syria.

Kochavi declined a request by Reuters to give specific numbers, but his spokeswoman said the map showed the relative strength and location of al Qaida bases, which appeared to be in the Karaman, Osmaniye and Sanliurfa provinces.

“Syria is projecting its conflict to the whole region. Those blotches (on the map) in Turkey are no mistake by the graphic artist and it is a short way from there into Europe,” Kochavi said at the conference held by the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv.

The spots on the map signifying al Qaida in Turkey were together about half the size of the blotch in the Egyptian Sinai peninsula, which Kochavi said was home to about 200 Jihadi militants.

Turkish anti-terrorist police raided the offices of an aid agency on the border with Syria this month, as part of what Turkish media said was an operation in six cities against individuals suspected of links to al Qaida.

Turkey has maintained an open-door policy throughout the Syrian conflict, providing a lifeline to rebel-held areas by allowing humanitarian aid in, giving refugees a route out and letting the rebel Free Syrian Army organize on its soil.

But the rise of al Qaida-linked groups such as Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in parts of northern Syria near the border has left Ankara open to accusations it is lending support to radical Islamists.

You May Like

French Refugee Drama Wins Cannes Top Prize

Dheepan is about a group of Sri Lankan refugees who pretend to be a family in order to flee their war-torn country for a housing project in France More

Photogallery Crisis in Macedonia Requires Meaningful and Swift Measures

The international community has called on Macedonian leadership to take concrete measures in support of democracy in order to exit the crisis More

Activists: IS Executes 217 Civilians, Soldiers Near Palmyra

British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on Sunday said the victims include nurses, women, children and Syrian government fighters More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Godwin from: Nigeria
January 30, 2014 8:55 AM
As sure as the sun will shine today! It is gratifying to see Israel give a graphical representation with facts Turkey is pivotal to terror axis in the region. No matter how many times Turkey is willing to deny this, facts on the ground remain that al qaida lives in and operates from Turkey, and from there is exported to Europe and America. Recep Tayyip Erdogan will be worried that after revealing the spy ring in Tehran Israel is still able to find out how many terror cells it operates in the country.

Truth is there is no how one can separate terrorism from Islamist, and Erdogan is one. This time around let Recep Tayyip Erdogan resort to Tehran to give him a list of spy rings in Ankara as he had helped Rouhani's predecessor Ahmadinejad in the past. Beats him how Israel manages to beat both his conventional security and al qaida to operate, find out and graphically represent same on a map to be used at such a wide scale. Yeah, it's such a joy seeing Erdogan remain quiet as a sign of defeat. Next time he should know his boundaries. Yes of course he's going to come up with a lie soon to deny this truth, but Assad had revealed it earlier. Think Hezbollah can use that intelligence and save itself from al qaida destruction.

by: mohamad from: iran
January 30, 2014 3:34 AM
In my opinion it is funny because how it is possible thar an israeili general knows that these people are alqaede members ,but europian countries intelligent services do not know well enough about their citizens .and on the other hand I do not agree with using similar terminology (alghaedeh)for a wide range of different people with sometimes oposite ideas that their common aim is helping syrian people instead of big powers

by: Dorean from: UK
January 29, 2014 5:15 PM
just to illustrate the fetid corruption of the Turkish Government, ley me remind you that the "Humanitarian Aid Agency" the Turkish couter terrorism unit has raided, were the organizers of the "Gaza Flotilla" if you remember... those who attacked the Israeli Navy were Terrorists... what a squalid country Turkey has become...!!
And now they are supporting the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood in their atrocities against Egyptian civilians... NATO...??? LOL
Just don't trust the BBC/Al Jazeera to report that accurately...

by: Karl from: UK
January 29, 2014 3:06 PM
This is intolerable, and if true, Turkey should be expelled from NATO forthwith...!!! we all know that Turkey is a corrupt entity... but if they have descended into such a squalid level - we must have nothing to do with them.

by: Dr. Kendo Namaru from: Japan
January 29, 2014 3:02 PM
let me tell you something... and it has been proven time and again without fail... when the Israelis say something - its true... and the World listens!! of course, the hypocrites will try to ignore it... and some even try to contradict it... but, we all know...
We Love you Israel..!! all our love from Japan
Shalom

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs