Militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), one of whom was captured and one of whom blew himself up facing a police raid, planned an attack on the extraordinary congress of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) on May 22, said Gaziantep Governor Ali Yerlikaya. Hurriyet daily news reported
Yerlikaya also confirmed that the militant who blew himself up was Yunus Durmaz, who had been sought by police with a reward of up to 4 million Turkish Liras on his name. His brother, Haci Ali Durmaz, who was being sought with a reward of up to 1.5 million liras, was apprehended by police on May 19, the governor also said.
"A member of the organization [ISIL] blew himself up in a police operation. It was established after fingerprints and DNA samples taken from the dead body that the person who killed himself was Yunus Durmaz," said Yerlikaya, adding that 12 of in the same ISIL cell, as well as Durmaz's wife and two children, were also detained in the operation.
The 12 suspects were sent to court after their interrogations were completed, the governor also said.
"Through police operations, planned attacks by the militants on the G-20 summit in Antalya, the HDP [Peoples' Democratic Party] building in Istanbul, daily Cumhuriyet's building in Ankara, Expo 2016 in Antalya, a football match between Galatasaray and Fenerbahce, tourism activities in Cappadocia, May 19 [Youth and Sports Day] celebrations, and the [AKP's] extraordinary congress on May 22 were prevented," Yerlikaya added.
Suicide vests, explosives, weapons and materials to make bombs were seized in recent police raids, and Yerlikaya said suspects accused of involvement in several bomb attacks in Turkey had been detained caught.
"Militants who tried to create chaos nationwide with their plans before the general elections on June 7, 2015 and Nov. 1, 2015 were caught. With the capturing of 30 members of ISIL as a result of the operations that started on May 17, the suspects of the bomb attacks on the HDP rally in [the southeastern province of] Diyarbakir on June 5, 2015, Suruc [in southern Turkey] on July 20, 2015, Ankara on Oct. 10, 2015, Istanbul's Beyoglu on March 19 and Gaziantep police officers on May 1 were apprehended," he added.
Five people were killed and hundreds more were injured in the attack on HDP rally in Diyarbakir last June, while the attack in Shanliurfa's Suruc district left 34 people dead in July. Some 109 people were later killed and hundreds were wounded in the twin suicide bombings in Ankara, while four people died in the attack in Istanbul's Beyoglu district and three police officers were killed in the attack in the southeastern province of Gaziantep.