Top DHKP-C terrorist group member caught plotting attack

Published 14.10.2019 19:29

Seval Yaprak, a wanted senior member of the Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C), has been captured in northwestern Turkey.

Yaprak was on the country's most wanted list and was in charge of the terrorist group's "armed propaganda unit," according to a statement released Monday by authorities.

Acting upon intelligence that she would "carry out a sensational attack," Istanbul police launched an investigation and concentrated efforts on her possible hideouts.

Upon receiving an anonymous tip that a woman resembling the wanted terrorist and wearing a headscarf was spotted heading to the border city of Edirne in northwestern Turkey, police launched an operation.

The car she was traveling in with another suspect was stopped at a gas station in Kırklareli near Edirne. Police detained Yaprak and the other unidentified suspect while "digital and written propaganda material" for the DHKP-C found in their possession.

The terrorist group, which is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union, is responsible for a number of attacks in Turkey, including the assassination of business tycoon Özdemir Sabancı in 1996 and an attack on the U.S. Embassy in Ankara in 2013.

The group has become less active in the country in recent years but remains a major security threat.

The DHKP-C, which operated under the name "Dev Sol" until 1994, claimed responsibility for a series of high-profile murders, including the assassination of nationalist politician Gün Sazak and former Prime Minister Nihat Erim in 1980.

The group also killed several Turkish intelligence officers.

In 1994, the DHKP-C was founded after Dev Sol splintered. The group's terror activities remained relatively minor compared to the PKK, another terrorist organization targeting Turkey.

The DHKP-C attempted to stage a bloody comeback in recent years by carrying out attacks against the police. In 2012, about 10 years after its last known lethal attack in Turkey, the DHKP-C conducted a suicide bombing at a police station in Istanbul, killing a policeman. It claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing at the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, which killed a Turkish security guard in February 2013.

This was followed a month later by rocket attacks against the Ministry of Justice in Ankara and the headquarters of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party).

In September 2013, the DHKP-C claimed responsibility for a rocket attack against the headquarters of Turkish police in the capital. No casualties were reported in the three attacks.

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