Turkey's Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said 258 terrorist attacks were prevented in 2016 thanks to intelligence efforts. "Throughout 2016 we have foiled the PKK's 214 attacks, 34 planned attacks of Daesh and 10 bombing plots that were planned by extreme left terrorist organizations," Minister Soylu said speaking at the Parliament plan and budgetary commission on Nov. 23.
Providing detailed information about Turkey's fight against Daesh, the minister said Turkey has put 52,075 suspicious people from 145 countries into a no entry list and has deported 3,790 foreign suspected terrorist individuals. The minister also added that they arrested 618 foreign terrorists in 2016.
Commenting on Turkey's efforts to prevent illegal immigration, Minister Soylu said in 2016 Turkey has stopped 160,086 illegal immigrants, adding that Turkish security forces have seized 2,985 people smugglers. Minister also added in 2016 Turkey accepted 721 Syrian refugees from the Greek Islands and 2,330 Syrians were sent to EU countries as part of the Turkish EU Refugee deal.
Regarding the ongoing investigation in the fight against the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ), who was behind the bloody coup attempt on July 15, Minister Soylu said as a result of the investigations so far 21,929 civil servants have been expelled. As many as 3,569 civil servants who were suspended from duty during the investigation returned back to their job after the completion of the investigations. Minister also said 9,786 people were arrested during the investigations into FETÖ.
Touching upon the fight against the, PKK Minister Soylu said in 2016 the PKK recruited only 519 new people and compared to previous years there is significant decline in this figure. "In previous years the PKK recruited 1,800-1,900 people, however this figure went down to 519 this year," said Soylu. "In 2016, 457 PKK militants escaped from the terror organisation and surrendered to Turkish security forces. This figure is the highest in last 17 years," he added.