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Marking Targets – Islamic State Khorasan (ISKP) Continues to Vilify Turkey’s Role in the Middle East and Afghanistan

Published | March 03,2023

By | Riccardo Valle , Lucas Webber

Marking Targets – Islamic State Khorasan (ISKP) Continues to Vilify Turkey’s Role in the Middle East and Afghanistan image

In early December last year, Turkey announced the arrest of two Islamic State (IS) militants accused of plotting an attack inside the country on New Year’s Eve. The detained persons, said to be foreign nationals from Uzbekistan and Tajikistan with links to IS’s Khorasan chapter, were caught after they tried to escape police in Istanbul. The Tajik, Abu Maimun, is described as an improvised explosives expert, trainer of jihadists in battlefield tactics, and producer of propaganda for social media. Turk authorities claim the plot was modeled after the January 1, 2017 nightclub shooting in Istanbul. Notably, the perpetrator of the said attack, Abdulkadir Masharipov, was also of Central Asian descent — an Uzbek national to be precise — while another suspect deemed complicit was later arrested in Kyrgyzstan.

In the months prior to these arrests, additional signs of apparent linkages between the Islamic State Khorasan Province (ISKP) and IS networks in Turkey were surfacing that involved recruitment, logistics, and fundraising. In August, the Afghan Taliban’s General Directorate of Intelligence (GDI) said it had apprehended an ISKP operative overseeing fundraising, weapons procurement, and travel facilitation of fighters via routes...