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Turkish President Erdogan VS India

Updated: Aug 1, 2020

At a recent threat assessment in New Delhi, it was noted that Turkey is “the hub of anti-India activities”, next only to Pakistan.

In the wake of Turkey’s “Islamic rebirth” under their volatile and unpredictable president, it seems that they are cozying up to Pakistan.

A senior government official informs us, “There is an effort to radicalise Indian Muslims and recruit fundamentalists coordinated from Turkey,” as well as funding and supporting of Islamist radical groups in places such as Kerala and Kashmir by Turkish outfits backed by the Turkish government.”

Officials have said that the Turkish Government has funded Kerala's and Kashmir's hard-line separatist leaders such as Syed Ali Geelani, but this has scaled up rapidly in recent times. The Erdogan government has been the pocket and the organiser for religious seminars in India, recruiting fundamentalists to radicalise people, and is even taking newly converted radicals on all-expense trips to Turkey in order to reaffirm their learnings.

“We are also aware of some people from this group travelling to Qatar to meet some people from Turkey to seek funding for their activities,” a government official adds and further says, “Amounts as high as Rs 40 lakh are being offered to preach radical Islam in Kerala”.

Earlier this year, Turkey raised its voice against India's abolishment of article 370 and the amendment of citizenship laws, even going as far as funding protestors, according to an intelligence assessment.

Turkey has been nurturing not only ISIS in Syria but also extremist Salafi Muslim groups in the area. In 2013, with the expansion of Al Qaeda affiliates and ISIS, the Salafi Jihadi movement started to grow. They obtained Turkey’s support in converting over 60,000 ISIS fighters, who entered through Turkey and were given an open and free passage.

In fact, ISIS fighters used to make clear declarations in front of Turkish authorities to let them cross over to fight for ISIS.

It is true that ISIS carried out attacks in Turkey, but it must be noted that most of these were against the minority Kurdish community.

Upon receiving pressure from the US to end this support in 2016, they arrested 1,000 ISIS members. The significance of this small measure was further diminished when most of their fighters shifted, settled and operated from Turkey. Officials also have reason to believe that Pakistan's ISI could find a new habitat in turkey

In conclusion, Erdogan’s ideologies, Turkey’s past actions and their current moves justify India’s every fear of them.

Reporter- Katyayani Nath

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