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Shocker: Hijackers Of Turk Plane Were Al Qaeda

From an unabashed Associated Press:


Report: Hijacker Went to al-Qaeda Camp

ANKARA, Turkey, (AP) – One of the hijackers of a Turkish plane received training at an al-Qaeda camp and wanted to be flown to Iran so he could eventually join al-Qaeda in Afghanistan, the state-run Anatolia news agency reported Monday, citing police.

Authorities didn’t say at which al-Qaeda camp 33-year-old hijacker Mommen Abdul Aziz Talikh, an Egyptian of Palestinian origin, received training.

Police said Talikh, along with Mehmet Resat Ozlu of Turkey, wielded a fake bomb and claimed al-Qaeda ties when hijacking the plane early Saturday after it took off from northern Cyprus. The pair held passengers and crew hostage for more than four hours before surrendering peacefully at the Turkish Mediterranean resort Antalya, where the plane had been diverted after taking off…

Police said that during their interrogation the two suspects confessed that they wanted to divert the plane to Iran and travel to Afghanistan to join the “jihad.”

The suspects told police during initial questioning that they tried to storm the cockpit shortly after takeoff, Antalya Governor Alaaddin Yuksel said. Passengers said they failed to break the door down

What a shock. As we noted, all of the initial reports went out of their way tamp down the passengers’ claims that the hijackers had told them they were Al Qaeda.

Like in this earlier article from the Associated Press:

Earlier, Turkish Cypriot authorities said the men were Iranians protesting U.S. policies, and some passengers said the hijackers claimed they were affiliated with al-Qaida. There was no confirmation of the claims.

That is in the articles that didn’t simply avoid any mention of Al Qaeda entirely. As was the case in this earlier article from Reuters:

The identity of the hijackers was still unclear: the transport minister of Turkish-backed breakaway northern Cyprus, Salih Usar, said they were two Iranians protesting against the United States. But Turkey’s Cihan news agency reported one was Palestinian and the other Turkish.

But note that even here the AP tries to fob this off as just a “report,” even though it is apparently direct from the Turkish police.

Police said that during their interrogation the two suspects confessed that they wanted to divert the plane to Iran and travel to Afghanistan to join the “jihad.”

Yes, but don’t worry. Only one of these hijackers was Al Qaeda, according to the AP.

Of course even this corrective report has gotten almost no play. This version of the AP article was found on the great but obscure Asharq Alawsat site. It’s not being run as front page news by our media guardians.

It’s old news now. Besides, the media doesn’t want to make their side look bad.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, August 21st, 2007. Comments are currently closed.

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