Turkey has deported more than 8,500 foreign fighters suspected of terrorism since the start of the civil war in Syria 10 years ago, today advanced the Turkish Ministry of Internal Affairs.
According to a government statement quoted by the Associated Press (AP) news agency, 8,585 foreign fighters have been “deported as a result of Turkey’s efforts to ensure its security both inside and outside the border” since 2011.
Since the start of the Syrian civil war, terrorist suspects from 102 countries, including 1,075 from European Union (EU) member states and 44 from the United States of America, have been expelled from Turkey.
In the first 10 months of this year, Turkey has deported 61 suspects from eight EU countries.
Foreign fighters left their home countries to join groups like the self-proclaimed Islamic State, or the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Turkey has carried out three military campaigns in northern Syria since 2016 and maintains a military presence in Idlib province in the northwest of the country, as well as other areas within the Syrian border.
Currently, the country led by Recep Tayyip Erdogan has ongoing operations against the PKK in northern Iraq.
The Islamic State carried out a series of major terrorist attacks on Turkish soil in 2015 and 2016, after the country joined the international coalition to fight the terrorist group.
Conflict with the PKK has claimed tens of thousands of deaths since the group launched its armed campaign in southeastern Turkey in 1984.
source: with agencies