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ISIS leader detained – Turkey — Analysis

Turkish security forces captured Master Zeyd the Islamic State leader codenamed Master Zeyd.

Turkish security forces have captured the terrorist Bashar Hattab Gahazal al Sumaidai of Islamic State (formerly ISIS), code-named Master Zeyd/Abu Zeyd. President Recep Tayyip Erdan told journalists on Thursday while returning to Turkey via the Balkans that he had been taken into custody by Turkish security forces. 

Erdogan called the terrorist “a terrorist”. “one of the most important directors of Daesh after [Abu Bakr al-]Baghdadi and [Abdullah] Quardash,”Referring to the organisation by its Arabic name. Baghdadi, the founder of IS, allegedly blew himself up in October 2019 during a US raid on his compound in Syria’s Idlib province. Quardash took over as the organization’s head.

Al-Sumaidai captured by Istanbul Police Department, General Directorate of Security (MIT), Erdogan said. He explained that Turkey had been following his links in Syria and Turkey, and that he was planning to enter Turkey illegally. While trying to obtain a fake identification card, he was disguised. Following interrogations by the MIT Police Department as well as the Istanbul Police Department, the militant leader is now being transferred to Turkish judicial officials.

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Al-Sumaidai confessed to working in the terror group’s Ministry of Education and Ministry of Justice. Numerous international reports identify him as the head of ISIS’s judiciary. Named as an possible successor of Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Quraishi – an IS leader, who like Baghdadi reportedly blew himself up in a US raid – he has been confirmed. He was among the first to get in touch with IS, just as the group was beginning to form in 2013. Prior experience in fighting with jihadist groups in Iraq meant that he got on the ground floor. 

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