“Another girl came from Syria to Turkey with explosives”
The suspected bomber of the Istanbul attack that killed six in late November said in her last testimonial that “another girl like her was sent from Syria to Turkey and she could also be used in a similar attack,” Turkish columnist Ismail Saymaz reported on Tuesday.
The 23 year old Syrian national Ahlam Albashir, who was captured the night of the bombing and jailed pending trial brought the bomb from Northern Syria and placed it on a bank on Istiklal Avenue, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu earlier said, accusing the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party) of perpetrating the attack, which was denied by the Kurdish armed group.
Albashir said that Bilal Hassan, a fugitive with whom she came into Turkey, brought along another girl aged 16-17 and provided housing for her, Saymaz wrote, citing from Albashir’s testimony.
“She came in with 'essential supplies' and she had explosives with her,” the testimony said.
According to Albashir’s statement, “this girl sent from Syria will be used in a similar action.”
The mysterious Ahlam Albashir has been the center of a debate to identify who was behind the attack. Despite accusations from Turkish government, the Kurdish groups denied any link with Albashir and said her family was linked to ISIS (Islamic State.)
“Three of her brothers died fighting for the Islamic State,” the commander of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Mazlum Abdi said after an investigation conducted in Northern Syria.
A former Turkish police chief who spent many years in Turkey’s southeast working against the Kurdish insurgency also said the statement of Albashir failed to confirm that she was a member of the PKK.