Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) Turkish authorities have arrested Islamic State’s health minister, along with thirteen others during an operation in south of Turkey, Anadolu agency reported.
Security sources were quoted as saying that the operation was carried out by the counter-terrorism and intelligence teams at Urfa province security department.
Authorities, according to the sources, were notified that group of IS members, including senior leaders, were passing from Syria to Turkey via smugglers. The members infiltrated into Turkey with help of three Kurdish organizations including the Democratic Union Party (PYD) ‘s military arm, Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which are labelled in Turkey as terrorists, and the Kurdistan Communities Union.
The arrested ones included seven Algerians, two Syrians, two Iraqis, one of whom was the IS former health minister, a Dutch member, a British from Moroccan origins and an Egyptian, the source added.
According to AlSumaria News, the militant group’s former health minister is called Bashir Hussein, an Iraqi doctor, who admitted during investigations to being an emir of the so-called health department. He also confessed that he was one of the founders of Jama’at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad in 2004, in addition to taking part in several operations by al-Qaeda in Iraq.
Thousands of IS militants as well as Iraqi civilians were killed since the government campaign, backed by paramilitary troops and the coalition, was launched in October 2016 to fight the militant group.
Last month, Abadi announced full liberation of Iraqi lands, declaring end of war against IS members.