Counter-Terrorism: Turkey's Triple Terrorist Threat


February 18, 2006: Turkey probably has the most difficult counter-terrorism job in the world. Not only does Turkey have to chase after Islamic terrorist, but it also has radical leftists and Kurdish separatists. All three groups are keen on blowing things up, preferably in a manner calculated to cause maximum embarrassment to the government. Despite all that, there have only been 5-7 bombings a year. The latest blast was on February 9th, when Kurds bombed an Internet café popular with policemen. One man was killed and fifteen others wounded.

Turkey has had serious terrorism problems long before September 11, 2001. Endemic government corruption, and ethnic unrest (mainly by the Kurds), has generated several terrorist groups. Many of these terrorists have taken refuge outside of Turkey, and come back only to carry out attacks. Thus the current war on terror has been a help to Turkey, because they can insist that many countries not shelter anti-Turkish terrorists as "political refugees."


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