Turkey arrests 15 IS members who allegedly plotted to target Istanbul synagogues

Istanbul police have arrested 15 suspects connected to the Islamic State terror group, who were allegedly plotting to target synagogues and churches.

“15 people were detained on the grounds that the so-called Khorasan Province leadership of Daesh [IS] ordered an action against the Swedish and Dutch consulate generals and places of worship belonging to our Christian and Jewish citizens in Istanbul,” Istanbul police said in a statement.

The US state department issued a warning to US citizens residing in Turkey that terror attacks could be imminent against diplomatic institutions and places Westerners are known to congregate, specifically naming churches and synagogues.

Turkish Jewish institutions have been targeted before by terrorists responding to geopolitical issues. In 2003, Al-Qaeda orchestrated a wave of bombings in Istanbul, hitting symbolic Western targets, such as the British consulate and local headquarters of the British HSBC bank. They also bombed two Turkish synagogues, killing 28 people and injuring hundreds.

The suspects arrested were allegedly affiliated with the “Khorasan” wing of the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS-K, who have warred with the Taliban in Afghanistan. They are focused on Khorasan, a region that historically covered the eastern frontier of the ancient Persian Empire.




Subscribe to the EJC newsletter

Get the EJC newsletter, including the latest statements and news from the European Jewish communities, direct to your inbox.

European Jewish Congress will use the information you provide on this form to contact you. We will treat your information with respect and will not share it with others. By clicking Subscribe, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

browse by community