/Turkey arrests Islamic State member over alleged plan to attack Anzac mourners at Gallipoli

Turkey arrests Islamic State member over alleged plan to attack Anzac mourners at Gallipoli

Updated

April 24, 2019 23:23:59

Turkish authorities have arrested a suspected Islamic State member they believe was planning to attack tomorrow’s Anzac commemorations at Gallipoli attended by hundreds of Australians and New Zealanders.

The suspect, a Syrian national, was detained in Tekirdag, a northwestern province close to the Gallipoli peninsula, a local police spokesman told Reuters.

It comes after Turkey banned its own citizens from attending the Anzac Day dawn service due to security concerns.

Every year, Australians and New Zealanders travel to Turkey for memorial services on April 25 commemorating the failed 1915 military campaign by ANZAC and allied forces to drive Ottoman troops from Gallipoli and the Dardanelles region.

Following the Christchurch mosque shootings, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan criticised New Zealand and Australia for sending troops to Turkey in the World War I Gallipoli campaign, claiming their motive was anti-Islam.

“Your grandparents came here … and they returned in caskets,” he said. “Have no doubt we will send you back like your grandfathers.”

The comments drew sharp rebuke from Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who called in the Turkish ambassador for a meeting, while New Zealand has sent Foreign Minister Winston Peters to confront Mr Erdogan.

The President’s spokesman later said his comments had been taken out of context.

More to come.

Reuters

Topics:

unrest-conflict-and-war,

terrorism,

turkey

First posted

April 24, 2019 22:39:30