World Bulletin / News Desk
Turkish security forces prevented a total of 339 major terror incidents during 2016, Turkey's interior minister announced Tuesday.
"313 of those [incidents] were planned by PKK, 22 by ISIL, 4 by radical leftist groups," Suleyman Soylu told a session at the Turkish Parliament to brief the lawmakers on "domestic security."
"247 improvised explosives, 61 bomb vehicles were seized and 23 suicide bomber suspects were caught along with 42 terrorist group members preparing for an attack. In last three months only, 80 significant incidents were prevented."
According to Soylu, the number of individuals joining the PKK -- designated a terrorist group by Turkey, U.S. and EU -- decreased from 3,572 in 2015 to 559 in 2016. He added only 5 individuals joined the group in last two months of 2016.
Regarding the anti-ISIL operations in 2016, Soylu said that 1,338, including 694 foreigners, were arrested in Turkey for having links to the group.
He added that Turkey would continue its anti-terrorism fight with all groups until they are defeated ultimately.
"But the whole world needs to show a decisive will to defeat terrorism", he said, calling NATO, UN and other international organizations to take real action.
According to Soylu, 1,108 associations in Turkey were also shut down in 2016 over their links to terrorist groups such as the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), PKK/KCK, DHKP-C and ISIL.
As part of the operations on social media in past six months, 1,729 individuals were detained for making propaganda on behalf of terrorist organizations, Soylu added.
Since 2015, Turkey has been fighting several terrorist groups both at home and along its border with Syria. It fights ISIL and PKK/PYD along its border in northern Syria, as well as the terrorist groups' networks inside Turkey.
Operations over FETO, which is the mastermind behind the failed July 15 coup attempt according to Turkey, as well as some leftist radical groups like the DHKP-C also continue nationwide.