Turkish officials said Sunday that they may have headed off a major terror attack that was apparently timed to take place at the same time as the Paris terror attacks. Officials told Reuters that on Friday they had arrested a “high-profile British jihadist” who was apparently planning some kind of attack.
The jihadist was arrested before the attacks in France occurred. It was only later that security officials realized that there might be a connection between their detainee and the Paris attacks.
The terrorist's name is thought to be Aine Lesley Davis, and he was an associate of "Jihadi John," a British terrorist who was an ISIS spokesperson. American officials said last week that they were “almost positive” that they had eliminated Jihadi John in an air raid last week.
Reuters quoted a Turkish source as saying that "Davis is a figure with key responsibilities within Islamic State and he wasn't caught alone. He was within a group. Right now we're investigating whether they were planning an attack in Istanbul similar to the one in Paris. We suspect there could have been a parallel attack with Paris, on the same day."
Istanbul would have been a prime target for an attack; the G20 Summit opened there Sunday, and had an attack taken place Friday it most certainly would have been postponed, G20 officials said. While fighting international terror, especially ISIS, had been on the agenda of representatives of the world's leading economies, security, along with the ongoing migration of Muslims into Europe, is at the top of the agenda. Speaking before the conference, EU chief Jean-Claude Juncker said that Europeans should not be confused as to who their enemies were. “The one responsible for the attacks in Paris … he is a criminal and not a refugee and not an asylum seeker,” he stated.