Tourists are being warned over travelling to Turkey this summer over fears it could be a target for ISIS.
The majority Muslim nation has long attracted westerners to its golden beaches and historic towns, but there are now serious concerns tourists will become “primary targets” for ISIS in the country.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s soldiers are heading to Raqqa after liberating the Syrian city of al-Bab, and for that, terrorists have vowed to strike the neighbouring nation.
Multiple ISIS publications have sworn to fight back and attack Turkey, rejoicing in killing soldiers over the border in Syria. A new report, by a professor, and former Turkish police chief has found travelling to the nation could well be walking into an ISIS trap.
Ahmet Yayla Professor of Criminology and former counter-terrorism police chief has consistently warned about attacks in his former home country.
The report, The Reina nightclub attack and the Islamic State threat to Turkey, claims there “may be as many as 2,000 hardcore fighters loyal to the Islamic State inside Turkey”.
On New Year’s Eve a rampaging gunman carried out a bloody assault on the Reina nightclub leaving 39 dead and 71 injured, eight weeks after Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi called for all-out war against Turkey.
Mr Yayla said: “As the Islamic State shows signs of crumbling in Syria and Iraq, Turkey now faces a nightmare scenario of a mass influx of Islamic State fighters into its territory.” He said: “The Islamic State will likely expand its campaign of attacks in Turkey.
“A sustained campaign of attacks by the Islamic State could lead to large-scale loss of life and significant damage to the Turkish economy. “The targeting of a nightclub popular with foreigners suggests Western diplomatic, commercial facilities, and tourists could all emerge as primary targets.”