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Islamic State operative planning 'sensational' attack nabbed in Istanbul

Ankara has arrested a man suspected of planning “a sensational attack” in Istanbul and six others in raids that point to a festering Islamic State problem in Turkey.
Turkish police officers wearing face masks stand in front of Hagia Sophia entrance on July 11, 2020 in Istanbul, a day after a top Turkish court revoked the sixth-century Hagia Sophia's status as a museum, clearing the way for it to be turned back into a mosque. - The United States said on July 10, it was "disappointed" by Turkey's decision to turn the Byzantine-era monument Hagia Sophia back into a mosque and urged equal access for all visitors. (Photo by Ozan KOSE / AFP) (Photo by OZAN KOSE/AFP via Getty

A suspected Islamic State militant planning what Turkish authorities have labeled “a sensational attack” was detained in Istanbul, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported Tuesday. Details were scant; the militant, identified solely by the initials H.S., was apprehended in a raid on a hotel in the city’s Kucukcekmece suburb. The man’s nationality was not revealed but he had crossed illegally in to the border province of Gaziantep from Syria and was in possession of an automatic rifle, ammunition and spare magazines. He had staked out Istanbul’s central Taksim Square, frequented by tourists and home to numerous bars, in apparent preparation for the attack, Anadolu reported.

Police detained six other suspected IS militants in the central Anatolian province of Kayseri in dawn raids, the English-language Daily Sabah reported.

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