0 Report: US intelligence questions Turkey about ISIL videos
US authorities provided a list of propaganda video links created by the terrorist Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), along with the names of those who uploaded the videos in Turkey, asking Turkish officials to take the necessary legal measures against those individuals, the Taraf daily reported on Friday.
The US administration has been working on forming a multinational coalition against ISIL to go after the organization both financially and militarily for some time.
According to the Taraf report, the list included links to a number of videos, mostly on YouTube, that ISIL uses for recruitment purposes.
But so far Turkey has not taken any steps to find and arrest the individuals in Turkey who uploaded the videos or have the videos removed, according to the report.
US officials asked Turkish authorities whether they had taken any steps regarding the ISIL videos on YouTube, but there has also been no answer to this question.
The US has been working to dry up ISIL's financial sources and stop its worldwide recruitment. According to Taraf, US intelligence officials have been examining ISIL's recruitment work in Turkey, which is when they prepared the list of pro-ISIL video links. In these videos, ISIL members call on people to join their organization and praise ISIL's actions. After Turkey took no action on the issue, US officials warned their Turkish counterparts a second time, again asking them to take legal measures against the individuals who uploaded the videos, Taraf reported.
The daily also reported that Turkey's warning about the videos came from the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and due to certain bilateral agreements between Turkish and US intelligence the CIA has the right to ask Turkey to take legal measures.
Turkish intelligence officials have notified the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) members about the CIA's request, Taraf said, but the government has so far done nothing about the issue.
Turkey has been the target of criticism, especially by the Western media, for turning a blind eye to the foreign fighters crossing into Syria and Iraq via Turkey.
There have also been some reports suggesting that ISIL militants who are hurt while fighting in Iraq and Syria come to Turkey for treatment.
Moreover, the Western press has reported stories over the past year claiming that ISIL is using İstanbul for its recruitment activities.
Parliamentary question on arms transfer to ISIL
In the meantime, main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) İzmir deputy Aytun Çıray, in a parliamentary question on Friday, addressed Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, asking whether it is true that Turkey has transferred weaponry to ISIL militants and other Syrian opposition groups since the start of the civil war in Syria.
In his parliamentary question Çıray asked whether Turkish trucks carried weapons to ISIL, the al-Nusra Front and the Free Syrian Army (FSA) via trucks that were seen in Google Earth photographs.
A news portal called Odatv reported that Turkey has transferred arms into Syria via 2,000 trucks, providing Google Earth photographs as proof.
Turkey has been pushing for the removal of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime since the beginning of the civil war in 2011 and defended the idea of supporting Syrian opposition groups. Turkish authorities have in the past repeatedly said the Assad regime is responsible for the emergence of radical terrorist groups such as ISIL.
In his parliamentary question Çıray asked whether one of the buildings that can be seen in the Odatv photographs belongs to the state. The building is in the capital Ankara's Yenimahalle neighborhood, Çıray stated. He also asked how many trucks are visible in these photos, which were taken at different times between Sept. 5, 2012 and Oct. 2, 2014.
Çıray further questioned whether these trucks have anything to do with the trucks that belong to the National Intelligence Organization (MİT), which has allegedly carried weapons to the Syrian opposition and if the trucks that are visible in the Google Earth images entered the MİT building in Yenimahalle.
He also asked if those trucks are easy to track via Google Earth, as well as any other vehicles entering the MİT building, whether Turkey's national security is at risk.
Several media reports stated in early August that a leaked document had revealed that a large cache of arms was on its way to Syria under the guise of humanitarian aid in MİT trucks that were intercepted on Jan. 19 in Adana's Ceyhan district.
The online news portal T24 published a report about a document allegedly signed by security services indicating that the gendarmerie had seized three trucks carrying arms to Syria and noted what was inside the trucks.
Although government officials refrained from commenting openly about the content of the trucks, then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan described the search of the trucks as "treason." Erdoğan and then-President Abdullah Gül said the trucks' contents were a "state secret" but that they were only transporting humanitarian aid to Turkmens in Syria.