In a 74-page confession submitted to the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s office, Kasım Güler, known as Abu Osama al Türki, outlined plans he devised as ISIS Turkey head to assassinate main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu and Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu. The ISIS militant also said the group planned to attack LGBT+ people, Alevi people, tourists, and the US Air Force Base at İncirlik, according to reporting by DW Turkish.
Güler was captured on June 15, 2021 by Turkey’s Intelligence Organization (MİT). He was on the red list for supporting terrorism and allegedly leading ISIS’ Turkey chapter. He was captured trying to cross from Turkey into Syria, his weapons were seized, and he was formally arrested in Ankara on June 21, 2021.
He was charged with a range of offenses, including “violation of the Constitution” and the illegal transport and sale of weapons and explosives.
The Ankara prosecutor has now completed its investigation into Güler. The ISIS leader chose to make a confession to reduce his sentence, which in total spanned 74 pages.
The first planned attack he outlined was that on İncirlik Air Force base in Adana, from where the US carries out many operations in Syria and the broader Middle East. He said that Nusret Yılmaz, a suspect in the Ankara Massacre, was ordered by Emni Hariç from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of ISIS to attack the American base in İncirlik.
Yılmaz was given 10 jihadists of Arab origin, according to Güler, and was joined by commanders and fighters from Gaziantep and Bingöl. One of them was an explosives expert. They rented a house near the base in Adana, where they stored a number of automatic weaponry and explosives.
The plan was to rent a vehicle, drive it to the house, fill it with explosives, and detonate it near the base.
However, according to Güler, the explosives expert from Gaziantep, Ebu İsmail from Bingöl, and several of the jihadists who were supposed to participate in the attack were captured by the Turkish military on the Hatay border before it was carried out.
Güler also said that the burning of Alevi vehicles and belongings in Adana in 2020 was authorized by ISIS to satisfy young fighters in the region whose “blood was boiling” because they wanted to be given a task.
He also outlined a plan to assassinate CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu while he was carrying out his “peace walk” from Ankara to Istanbul in 2017. Nusret Yılmaz allegedly planned the assassination; jihadists would drive into the crowd and kill CHP supporters, including Kılıçdaroğlu himself.
This operation was also approved by ISIS’ Minister of Foreign Affairs, Emni Hariç.
The final plan revealed by Güler in his confession was to kill Istanbul Mayor İmamoğlu. Apparently, the plan was linked to an assassination plot against Acun Ilıcalı, the owner of news station TV 8. An operative named Ömer, codenamed Hattap, asked for extra weaponry.
The attack was not carried out because the plan was reported to the media and Ilıcalı had too high a level of security protection.