TEL AVIV – NATO member Turkey is providing direct intelligence and logistical support to the ISIS terrorist organization, according to a senior Egyptian security official speaking to WND.
The official said Egypt has information Turkish intelligence is passing to ISIS satellite imagery and other data, with particular emphasis on exposing to ISIS jihadists the positions of Kurdish fighters and the storage locations of their weapons and munitions.
The official confirmed reports that Turkey released ISIS terrorists from jail in a sweeping deal with the jihadist organization that saw the release of 49 hostages from the Turkish embassy in Mosul who were being held by ISIS.
While some news media reports say Turkey may have released at least 180 ISIS terrorists in the deal, including two British jihadists, the Egyptian official said the number of ISIS terrorists released by Turkey was closer to 700.
Tensions between the Turkish government and its Kurdish population have been high as Kurds have sought autonomy for three decades and have faced mass ISIS attacks.
Kurdish forces have been leading a military campaign targeting ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
On Tuesday, Kurdish protesters demanding help in the fight against ISIS clashed with police in Turkey, leaving at least 14 people dead and scores injured, according to reports.
The Egyptian information about Turkey’s alleged role in providing support to ISIS seems to bolster accusations against Turkey and Arab allies made last week by Vice President Joseph Biden.
It was reported Biden last weekend apologized to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for “any implication” that Turkey or Arab allies had intentionally supplied weapons to ISIS or helped in the growth other Islamic jihadist groups in Syria, according to the White House.
One week ago, Biden told an audience at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government that ISIS had been inadvertently strengthened by actions taken by Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and Arab allies who were supporting the insurgency against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Biden further implied Turkey, the UAE and other Arab countries were supplying weapons to al-Qaida and its offshoots in Syria, including the al-Nusra front.
“They poured hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against Assad,” Biden told students. “Except that the people who were being supplied were al-Nusra and al-Qaida and the extremist elements of jihadis coming from other parts of the world.
“We could not convince our colleagues to stop supplying them,” Biden said.
Regarding Turkey’s alleged role, Biden said, “President Erdogan told me, he’s an old friend, said, ‘You were right. We let too many people (including foreign fighters) through.’ Now they are trying to seal their border.”
Erdogan told reporters he vehemently denied making such a statement.