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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

Mob boss: Turkey sent arms to Syria's al-Nusra through private military contractor

Iran Press TV

Monday, 31 May 2021 5:52 PM

A Turkish mob boss and former ally of the country's president has accused the country's ruling party of conspiring with a pro-government paramilitary contractor to divert aid intended for the Turkish minority in Syria to the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham Takfiri terrorist group, formerly known as al-Nusra Front, in the war-ravaged Arab country.

Turkey's mafia leader Sedat Peker claimed in a video on Sunday that a paramilitary contracting company called SADAT, which is close to the Turkish ruling AK Party of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, had diverted a 2015 aid convoy for Syrian Turkmen minorities in Syria's Bayirbucak region to al-Nusra terrorists.

Peker said in the video that he had decided at the time to send aid to the Syrian Turkmen and shared the plan with a deputy from the ruling government in order to receive permission to dispatch the trucks.

"They said 'Let's send additional trucks to Syria with your aid convoy.' We sent our trucks to Syria as aid trucks, then, we posed for photos with them. However, I thought they sent other trucks to the Syrian Turkmen," he said.

"They diverted aid trucks for Turkmen to al-Nusra under my name, but I didn't send them — SADAT did. I was informed about it from one of our Turkmen friends," Peker added.

Peker also stated that he was alerted on the destination of SADAT trucks that carried military supplies, drones and vehicles after videos with Takfiri terrorists speaking Arabic in Syria had surfaced on social media.

"One of our Turkmen friends said that they are al-Nusra. Others have also told me that the trucks sent by SADAT are for al-Nusra," he added.

Peker said he had objected to aiding al-Nusra at the time as they were fighting with the Turkmen.

The Jabhat al-Nusra Takfiri terrorist group is now in control of the last stronghold of foreign-sponsored terrorists in Syria's northwestern province of Idlib near the Turkish border.

Peker spent a decade in prison in Turkey over his involvement in organized crime and is currently wanted for heading a criminal group.

In several videos that have been viewed a total of 55 million times, he has dropped bombshell charges that certain Turkish government officials or their family members are involved in drug running, rape and murder.

Peker says his videos are designed to "take revenge" on the government in Ankara and especially Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu, who allowed police officers to raid his home after he fell out with the government.

SADAT denies allegations

SADAT, meanwhile, has denied in a series of tweets that it sent weapons to al-Nusra, saying that Peker himself has actually confessed to committing a crime in a video.

"Organized crime leader Sedat Peker confessed to arms smuggling in a video," SADAT said on Sunday, while calling on the mafia boss to deliver the documents he has to a prosecutor's office to prove his claims.

"Peker confesses to selling weapons to terrorist groups, but our company has no links to the weapons delivered to these terrorist groups by Peker," the paramilitary group added.

SADAT, founded in 2012, says it is "the first and the only company in Turkey that internationally provides consultancy and military training services at the international defense and interior security sector," according to its website.

The paramilitary company is closely linked to the Turkish government and allegedly played a role in recruiting and providing training to militants during the war in Syria and the conflict in Libya.

Back in February, Damascus accused Ankara of aiming to support terrorist groups such as Daesh and Jabhat al-Nusra to serve President Erdogan's personal agendas and to "achieve his ambitions and Ottoman illusions."

The Turkish military presence is regarded in Syria as an attack against its sovereignty.

Turkey has been involved militarily in the war in Syria since early 2011. It has provided the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA) with military assistance throughout.

In 2018 and 2019, Turkey launched cross-border military operations in northern Syria with the declared aim of eliminating Syrian Kurdish militants of the People's Protection Units (YPG), which Ankara regards as a terrorist organization tied to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

Turkey has since taken control of several areas in northern Syria in addition to other Kurdish-controlled areas.

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