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Turkish intel issues al-Qaeda-linked suicide attack warning

It has been reported by Turkish intelligence that the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is planning attacks in three Turkish cities in order to sabotage talks in Geneva aimed at finding a solution in war-torn Syria and has assigned 20 people to carry out these attacks.

A tip about the al-Qaeda-linked group has put the security forces on alert and precautions are being taken in Ankara, İstanbul and southern Turkish province of Hatay by Turkish intelligence units.

The Geneva talks, known informally as “Geneva II,” will be held in Montreux on the opposite side of Leman Lake, between Jan. 22 and Jan. 24.

Reyhanlı in the southern Turkish province of Hatay was hit by a deadly attack that killed 53 people and injured over a hundred on May 11, 2013.

ISIL had previously threatened Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan with initiating a series of “suicide attacks” in İstanbul and Ankara and demanded that Turkey reopen the Bab al-Hawa and Bab al-Salameh crossing points, which authorities closed after ISIL seized control of the town of Azaz.

Turkey has been one of the strongest backers of the opposition forces in the two-and-a-half-year uprising against Assad. While it denies arming them, fighters including extremists have been able to cross its border into Syria.

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