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Turkey extradites ISIL member to Australia

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A fighter of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) who featured heavily in the jihadist group’s recruiting propaganda will be charged with “serious terrorism offences” after being extradited to Australia from Turkey, Agence France-Presse reported, citing the Australian police.

Neil Christopher Prakash, 31, was arrested in Turkey in 2016 after crossing into the country from Syria.

Prakash was sentenced in 2019 to seven years’ imprisonment by a Turkish court, which found him guilty of belonging to a terrorist organization.

Australian Federal Police (AFP) said Prakash arrived in Australia by plane on Friday morning.

“An investigation started in 2016 when the man was alleged to have traveled to Syria to fight with Islamic State,” it said in a statement.

“The AFP will allege in court that the man committed a range of serious terrorism offences.”

Authorities have estimated some 230 Australians traveled to Iraq and Syria to take up arms since 2012, with Prakash being one of the most prominent examples.

He featured in ISIL recruiting videos in which he urged Australians to “wake up” and join the group.

Prakash was described by former conservative prime minister Malcolm Turnbull as one of the “key financiers or organisers” for the ISIL in the Middle East.

Former Australian attorney-general George Brandis in 2016 said Prakash had been killed in Iraq following a targeted US air strike.

It was later confirmed that he was wounded but not killed in the blast.

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