Turkish police detained six suspects in İstanbul as part of an operation targeting an Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) cell which is linked to Talip Akkurt, an ISIL militant who threatened Turkey in a video that showed the burning to death of two Turkish soldiers last month in Syria, the T24 news website reported on Friday.
According to the report, İstanbul police conducted the operation after mapping out the ISIL cell linked with Akkurt, who left Turkey illegally through Gaziantep in February 2016. Five of the suspects were released pending trial and one was arrested, while an arrest warrant was issued for Akkurt.
As part of Operation Euphrates Shield, Turkey sent tanks across the border to help Syrian rebels drive ISIL from the border city of Jarabulus in late August, in a dramatic escalation of its involvement in the Syrian civil war.
Fifty-one Turkish soldiers have been killed during Operation Euphrates Shield.