The MV Mavi Marmara (Photo: Wiki Commons)
A Turkish participant in the infamous 2010 flotilla to Gaza was killed in a US airstrike on an ISIS target in Syria, Turkish news outlets have reported. 40-year-old Yakup Bulent Alniak, who was aboard the Mavi Marmara when passengers attacked Israeli naval commandos enforcing a blockade on Gaza, was killed in Idlib, Syria over the weekend.
According to the Turkish World Bulletin, Alniak was in Syria doing charity work ahead of the Islamic holiday of Eid el-Adha, but other sources, including Turkey’s T24, claim he was in fact fighting alongside al-Qaeda splinter group the Al-Nusra Front. Although at odds with IS, Nusra Front is also vehemently anti-West, and both are considered extremely dangerous.
The Turkish humanitarian group behind the 2010 flotilla, the Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), has been investigated for ties to both Hamas and al-Qaeda. “Recent reports of the Turkish military intercepting an alleged IHH weapons truck on the Syrian border was an indication that the flotilla charity was being targeted,” Jonathan Schanzer, vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told The Jerusalem Post in January, when 23 people were arrested by Turkish police.
“There has long been ample reason to believe the group was tied to Hamas, al-Qaeda, and other terror groups in Syria,” he said.
In 2010, 87 US senators asked President Barack Obama to designate IHH as a terrorist organization, but that did not happen, despite US court documents tying the group to al-Qaeda.Mavi Marmara Activists Prepare to Attack IDF Soldiers. (Photo: IDF)
The Mavi Marmara was only one of six ships in the flotilla, and the only one aboard which violence broke out. Israeli naval commandos were enforcing a blockade on Gaza to stem the flow of weapons to Hamas, something the UN determined was legitimate and legal.
Nine activists were killed in the incident, and a tenth succumbed this year to wounds suffered at the time. Alniak escaped unharmed from the incident.
The airstrike which killed Alniak was one of several aimed at pushing back Islamic forces from the Kurdish town of Kobani, Syria, near the border with Turkey. Some 15,000 Kurds have fled to Turkey as a result of the ISIS siege on the town.
Credit to Breakingisraelnews.com
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