ISIS have published what they describe as a “final warning to Turkey” in a video online. A Turkish jihadist from Bursa delivered the video message. ISIS had carefully chosen him as Bursa is the old capital of the Ottoman Empire and is a conservative support base for the ruling AKP party.
Immediately following this Security News Desk was informed by 5 Dimension Consultants, a leading geopolitical assessment company, that, “A credible source who has worked within the smuggling networks on the Syrian/Turkish border since early 2012, informed us that ISIS agents have told their most closely associated smugglers to take extra precautions over the coming days and weeks”.
“The reason for this is because ISIS are planning an incident or series of incidents that they know will lead to a security backlash and heavy crackdown on those associated with ISIS within the country,” said Aimen Dean, from 5 Dimensions.
The Turkish decision to join the US led coalition against ISIS and create a safe zone along the Turkish Syrian border pushing ISIS back whilst cooperating with Syrian Islamist groups such as Ahrar al-Sham is likely to have stimulated a desire for retaliation by ISIS.
It is probable that ISIS’ warning to their smugglers in Turkey provides some context regarding a timetable for potential attacks. Dean believes this is likely to be no longer than weeks and any Turkish military operations commence this will further enrage ISIS commanders.
Dean added, “We anticipate attacks against security and military targets. However, tourism and transport will also be at risk from attacks in the form of mass shootings and possibly suicide and car bombs over the coming weeks. We understand from our sources that cities such as Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir and Antalya will be particularly vulnerable.”
Of note, all of the reports provided to Security News Desk and SecurityMiddleEast.com by 5 Dimension Consultants and Aimen Dean over the past year have proved correct.