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Russian diplomat says Turkey is key supplier of weapons to Islamic State

April 01, 21:59 UTC+3
According to Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Vitaly Churkin, Turkey is doing so through non-governmental organizations
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© EPA/ABED AL HAFIZ HASHLAMOUN, Archive

 

UNITED NATIONS, April 1. /TASS/. Turkey is a key supplier of weapons and military hardware to the Islamic State terrorist group and its intelligence services are in charge of these activities, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin said in a letter to the United Nations Security Council published on Friday.

"The main supplier of weapons and military equipment to ISIL [the former name of Islamic State, a terrorist organization outlawed in Russia - TASS] fighters is Turkey, which is doing so through non-governmental organizations. Work in this area is overseen by the National Intelligence Organization of Turkey. Transportation mainly involves vehicles, including as part of humanitarian aid convoys," the letter says.

The Russian diplomat cites data about weapons and munitions supplies to terrorists in Syria over a period from November 2015 to late January 2016. "Between 11 and 21 January 2016, Turkish intelligence officers supplied Jabhat al-Sham terrorists with 7.62mm and 12.7mm ammunition and with rounds for RPG-7 grenade launchers," the document says. "On 25 January 2016, the Turkish Foundation for Human Rights and Freedoms financed a shipment of equipment and food (approximately 55 tons) to ISIL terrorists."

Besar foundation as key player in weapons supplies

The Besar foundation, according to the Russian diplomat, is most actively engaged in supplies of weapons and equipment to Islamic State fighters. In 2015, this foundation "formed around 50 conveys to the Turkmen areas of Bayirbucak and Kiziltepe (260 km north of Damascus)," he said in the letter.

"Donations from individuals and entities are "officially" its main source of funding. In point of fact, the organization’s account receives such funds from a specific budget allocation of the National Intelligence Organization. The Besar foundation has opened current accounts in Turkish and foreign banks with the support of the Government," the letter says.

Another major supplier of weapons and military equipment to Syrian territories controlled by Islamic State is the Iyilikder foundation, which dispatched about 25 various supply convoys in 2015.

Supplies of industrial chemicals to a sum of $1.9 million

The Russian UN ambassador informed about smuggling of explosives and industrial chemicals to terrorist groups operating in Syria, which "is also usually organized from Turkish territory, through border crossings in the vicinity of Reyhanli (Turkey), Azaz (Syria), Al-Qamishli (Syria) and Jarablus (Syria)."

"Total supplies to terrorists through Turkey were as follows in 2015: 2,500 tons of ammonium nitrate (worth approximately US$ 788,700); 456 tons of potassium nitrate ($468,700); 75 tons of aluminium powder ($496,500); sodium nitrate ($19,400); glycerine ($102,500); and nitric acid ($34,000)," Churkin wrote in his letter.

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