Last week, the arrest of six Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) undercover agents in Gaziantep, southern Turkey, allegedly exposed a new terror plot. IS operatives revealed the terror group plans to stage a series of attacks targeting young Jewish people in Turkey, Sky News says in an exclusive report, citing an unnamed intelligence source.
The source claims kindergartens, schools and youth centers, attached to religious institutions, such as Istanbul’s synagogue in Beyoglu, are at risk.
“This is a more than credible threat. This is an active plot,” the source said, stressing that the schedule for the attack as yet remains unknown. “It could be in the next 24 hours or next few days,” the source said, adding, “undercover and other covert counter-terror measures” are already being implemented “around the clock.”
“In light of these circumstances, extraordinary security measures are being taken above and beyond the high alert level already put in place by the Turkish police, as well as vigilance within the Jewish community,” the intelligence source said.
A suicide bomb attack in central Istanbul on March 19 claimed the lives of three Israelis and an Iranian.
Just a couple of days later, on March 22, another terror attack took place in Brussels, Belgium, where a series of explosions on public transport at the capital’s airport killed 35 people.
Islamic State claimed responsibility for both attacks.
“The so-called Islamic State is believed to be behind both sets of attacks and the organization continues in determined efforts to perpetrate further attacks in Turkey and elsewhere,” Sky News said, citing an intelligence report it had seen.
On Monday, the Israeli government issued a warning to its citizens, strongly recommending avoiding travel to Turkey, and advising those in the country to leave immediately.