Swedish Supreme Court stops extradition of senior FETO terrorist

Fugitive Yilmaz Aytan's extradition was requested by Turkish Justice Ministry for crimes of 'forming/leading' armed terror group.

Swedish Supreme Court stops extradition of senior FETO terrorist

A member of the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) that Sweden's Supreme Court had blocked from being extradited to Türkiye was found to be one of the terror group's ringleaders.

Just weeks after Sweden signed an agreement with Türkiye allowing Stockholm to join NATO as long as it take steps to address Ankara's terrorism concerns, Swedish media reports had recently emerged that the court blocked the FETO member's extradition, who was identified as Yilmaz Aytan, a so-called covert imam running the terror group's schools in Afghanistan.

Since 2018, Aytan has had a permanent residence permit in Sweden, where he filed for asylum to escape efforts launched against the terror group. He has since been granted refugee status, according to Swedish media.

Sweden, along with Finland, formally applied to join NATO last month, a decision spurred by Russia's war on Ukraine.

FETO and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated a defeated coup attempt in Türkiye on July 15, 2016, in which 251 people were killed and 2,734 injured.

Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police and judiciary.

Authorities in Türkiye have uncovered that Aytan is a user of the organization's encrypted communication app ByLock and is among the top members of the terrorist organization.

Türkiye's Justice Ministry has filed a request with Sweden to extradite Aytan for the crime of "forming/leading an armed terrorist organization."

The Swedish daily Dagens Juridik reported on Friday that the extradition of the 48-year-old man was stopped by the Supreme Court, which denied that Aytan's actions with the FETO terror group did not constitute crimes in Sweden.

Hüseyin Demir