A report prepared by the Dutch intelligence revealed that Daesh mercenaries are currently using Turkish territory as a strategic base to regain its strength and launch a covert war in Europe, the Intel News website reported Thursday.
The assessment came in a report published for the first time by the General Intelligence and Security Service of the Netherlands, on its website under the headline “The legacy of Syria: Global Jihad is still a threat to Europe.”
The 22-page report said the Turkish government did not see extremist groups such as al-Qaeda and Daesh a national security threat, instead, “the Turkish security services are much more interested in the Kurds of the PKK in Turkey, and the People’s Protection Units in Syria.”
Although the Turkish authorities sometimes take action against al-Qaeda and Daesh, according to the report, “Turkish interests do not always coincide with European priorities in the fight against terrorism.”
Because of this difference of interest, “Turkey has become a major center for the transit of tens of thousands of foreign fighters who have poured into Syria to fight for extremist organizations during the height of the Syrian civil war.”
According to the intelligence report that at least 4,000 elements of Daesh and al-Qaeda are Turkish citizens.
In addition, Turkey has become home to tens of thousands of Daesh and al-Qaeda sympathizers, while the two organizations have maintained an active presence throughout Turkey.
The Turkish government’s non-interference approach “gives sufficient breathing space and freedom of movement to these organizations to work in the country.” the report said.
The two organizations are using relative stability in Turkey to develop plans to attack Western targets, according to Dutch intelligence.
Adding that Daesh “is planning to form and guide a secret war on the European continent.”
The successive strikes of the international coalition against Daesh in both Syria and Iraq have led to a geographically receding decline.
However, the disappearance of thousands of Daesh elements has led to considerable controversy over those providing them with a safe haven, primarily Turkey, which was their main transit point from Europe to Syrian and Iraqi territory.