PFI has close ties to hardline Turkish group supplying arms to Syrian jihadists: officials

First published September 29, 2022, 4:29 PM IST

The Indian Popular Front (PFI) has close ties to a radical Turkish group accused of supplying weapons to Al-Qaeda-affiliated jihadists in Syria, and even two senior leaders of the just-banned outfit have been harbored by the group, officials said Thursday.

The Foundation for Human Rights and Freedoms and Humanitarian Aid, often known as IHH or Insan Hak ve Hurriyetleri ve Insani Yardim Vakfi, presents itself as a Turkish human rights organization engaged in work beneficial to society.

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Investigators have found that the organization suspected of transferring weapons to al-Qaeda-linked militants in Syria in January 2014 is a Turkish charity.

The IHH is allegedly linked to the arming of Libyan militias in leaked emails from Berat Albayrak, Turkey‘s former finance minister and son-in-law of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The IHH has been noted as a group that works closely with the Turkish intelligence agency MIT.

According to a report by Nordic Monitor, EM Abdul Rahiman and Professor P Koya, members of the national executive board of the PFI, were privately housed in Istanbul by the IHH.

Nordic Monitor, based in Stockholm, operates as an intelligence platform that tracks extremism, radical movements, xenophobia, terrorism, crime and other relevant issues that are essential for the safety of communities. Its main target is Turkey.

Erdogan is trying to engage Southeast Asian Muslims as a global community leader. The meeting between a charity linked to Turkish intelligence services and jihadists and an Indian extremist group is therefore significant.

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Officials say the fact that PFI issued a statement endorsing Erdogan following the failed 2016 coup attempt, which was allegedly a false flag orchestrated by Erdogan’s intelligence and military chiefs to shore up Islamist power in government and launching a purge of critics from government jobs, can be used to measure the friendly relationship between Turkey and PFI.

PFI has close ties to the hardline Turkish group that supplies arms to Syrian jihadist officials snt

The Turkish government returned the favor by promoting PFI on the state-run Anadolu news agency as a civic and social group “whose members have been mistreated by the Indian police”.

The officials said the PFI appears to be a perfect match for the IHH, as both organizations have championed jihadist ideology.

The Muslim Brotherhood, which was established in 1928 in Egypt by Hasan Al-Banna to unite Muslims and ignore differences in order to achieve a “greater goal” of gaining political power in Egypt before spreading to the rest from the Middle East, North Africa and other parts of the world, and the PFI also share amazing similarities.

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India’s PFI, which strives to unite Muslims by ignoring differences and focusing on “the end goal” as they see it, has embraced the idea, officials say.
This is an assimilation strategy used by PFI thinkers and ideologues to infiltrate among moderate Muslims or Sufis in order to attract as many young people as possible.

The PFI works for the benefit of their own organization and not for the ‘Ummah’. His end goal is to achieve political power by creating unrest among the masses. The PFI also devised a shrewd strategy to gain the support of Christians to seize power. To attract Christians, they used the word “faith” rather than any Muslim word, officials said.

(With PTI entries)

Last updated Sep 29, 2022 4:29 PM IST

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