HomeCricketSyrian woman gets life term in Turkiye jail for 2022 blast

Syrian woman gets life term in Turkiye jail for 2022 blast

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Representatives of the Turkish communities put flowers over a memorial placed on the spot of Sunday’s explosion on Istanbul’s popular pedestrian Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. File
| Photo Credit: AP

A Turkish court on Friday sentenced a Syrian woman to life in prison for a deadly explosion in a busy shopping district in Istanbul in 2022, Turkiye’s state-run news agency reported.

Alham Albashir was given seven consecutive life sentences after being convicted on terrorism charges.

The blast on November 13, 2022, tore through Istiklal Avenue, a thoroughfare in Istanbul lined with shops and restaurants, killing six people, two children among them, and wounding 99 others.

Albashir and a man named as Bilal el-Hacmaus were intelligence operatives of the People’s Protection Units (YPG), a Syrian Kurdish militia group, and its political branch, the Democratic Union Party (PYD), according to an indictment prepared by Istanbul prosecutors last year.

Turkiye regards the YPG as the Syrian arm of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) which has waged a decades-long insurgency within Turkiye to establish an autonomous region in southeastern Turkiye.

Albashir and el-Hamaus were given special training by the YPG and PYD and sent to Turkey along with explosives, where they travelled to Istanbul with the help of a network established by the organisation, the indictment said. El-Hacmaus managed to flee the country.

The fight between the PKK and Turkiye has claimed tens of thousands of lives since the 1980s and Turkiye and its Western allies have labelled PKK a terrorist organisation.

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