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Full Version: Turkey arrests a Syrian for planning to attack Israeli Ships
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Looks like 11 more people might have been arrested for related charges, but there are not much news about them.
While Lu'ai Sakra in court stated that they were planning to attack Israeli ships in the International waters in order not to hurt any Turkish citizens, video played in the courtroom showed Lu'ai Sakra participating in the decapitation of a captured Turkish driver in Iraq.
Looks like Lu'ai Sakra has changed his looks several times through plastic surgery.
Following is an excerpt from ABC News
ISTANBUL, Turkey Aug 11, 2005 — A Syrian with suspected al-Qaida ties appeared in court Thursday amid charges he plotted to slam speedboats packed with explosives into cruise ships carrying Israeli tourists.

Police, meanwhile, frantically searched for others linked to the suspect, who reportedly had plastic surgery to conceal his identity. Authorities were also hunting for two squads of possible suicide bombers, reports said.
Israel on Thursday canceled its travel warning to Turkey, with the country's counter-terrorism center saying the move was the result of efforts by Turkish security forces.

[Image: IST10308111011.jpeg]
Suspected al-Qaida militant Lu'ai Sakra, center, escorted by plainclothes Turkish policemen, shouts "Allahu Akbar," Arabic for "God is great," as he leaves from a courthouse in Istanbul, Turkey, Thursday, Aug. 11, 2005. A Turkish court pressed charges against Lu'ai Sakra, a Syrian suspected of plotting to slam a speedboat packed with a ton of explosives into cruise ships filled with Israeli tourists. Defense lawyer Ilhami Sayan told reporters that the Syrian, identified in the Turkish media as Lu'ai Sakra, was charged with membership in an illegal organization but refused to give any details citing court regulations. (AP Photo/Murad Sezer)

Rest of the story at:
Seems to be connected to a Debka story from two days ago below, somehow, even if the terrorist's name is different.

Quote:DEBKAfile discloses: Turkey arrests a key terrorist close to bin Laden for plot to blow up Israeli cruise ships.

August 10, 2005, 3:08 PM (GMT+02:00)
Jailed Turkish terror chief Mirzabeyoglu

DEBKAfile’s exclusive counter-terrorist sources reveal: Habib Akdas heads the Turkish terrorist group IBDA-C, the Great Eastern Islamic Raiders Front. He led the al Qaeda plot to ram fast rubber dinghies loaded with explosives into several Israeli cruise vessels docking in southern Turkish ports last weekend. The cell he led also planned attacks on Jewish targets. The same IBDA-C group struck Jewish synagogues in Istanbul on November 15, 2003.

The Israel liners were diverted to Cypus from their destination port of Antalya and Israelis warned to avoid that coast. Our sources add the link between the IBDA-C and al Qaeda goes back to 1998 when its former leader Mirzabeyoglu and his followers were sent to prison. Between 50 and 70 escaped the country, splitting up between Afghanistan, Chechnya, Greece, Bosnia and Germany. In the first two countries, the fugitives joined up with al Qaeda and fought with them. It was then that Habib Akdas joined Osama bin Laden’s inner circle. In Bosnia, they received terrorist training; in Greece they exploited old connections in Greek intelligence to secure assistance. In the 1980s, when tensions were running high between Athens and Ankara, Greek intelligence used IBDA-C members for forays into Turkey.

In Germany, the Turkish terrorists set up logistics and intelligence networks to support members operating in conjunction with al Qaeda.

From the late 1990s, therefore, far from the gaze of western counter-terror and Turkish security authorities, the IBDA-C and al Qaeda quietly built up one of the most dangerous undercover terrorist networks operating today in Europe.

Debka,so they got something accurate for once?

Looks like the Israelis knew what they were talking about when they stopped cruise ships travelling to Turkey. I bet they are who told the Turks where and who this clown was.

I wouldn't travel on any cruise within 5K miles of a Muslim state. This here GWOT is just starting folks,these kinds of attacks WILL become fairly common and will shut down the travel industry in the Med to a large extent eventually I think.

Look how vulnerable the cruise ship is,it's unprotected against this threat.
Turkish security forces complained about a statement by an Israel security official during Turkey's al-Qaeda operation, calling the announcement "ill-timed," and regretted that the news had made headlines around the world, adding that it "undermined our operations."

News channel NTV quoted a Turkish police official on Thursday saying that security forces were looking for other suspects linked to Lu'ai Sakra, a Syrian believed to be linked to al-Qaeda who was found with 750 kilograms of explosives last week. "Police were searching for two teams of possible suicide bombers," the police official added.

Well,Israeli spokesmen should not make public statements,often we do the same stuff and it helps the jerks.

However,it seems to me the Mossad is who located this clown,that's why Israel had already stopped cruises to Turkey until he was apprehended.
Israel spies on friendly states(as do we)and many think it's nefarious,but the fact is Israel is THE vicitm of Islamic terrorism and if we had listened to them 9-11 would never have happened. They had been pursuing these nuts in America a hell of a lot more than we were and I think the same may be stated for Turkey.
this plot was discovered about two weeks ago by accidental fire started in a building where they were making bombs. I think two members of the team was arrested on that spot, and 3 terrorists escaped.
Turkish police was investigating who rented the building, and who has visited the building when Israeli announcement came out.

We can't blame Israeli's for trying to protect their citizens, but whole deal could have been handled more discretely. Perhaps this incident shows where nations needs better cooperation in fighting international terrorism.
Discretion is a necessity. Oftentimes,we let stuff out way too soon ourselves.