Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Turkey's Erdogan: Slave Trader

Turkey’s Erdogan: Slave Trader

by Stephen Lendman

Erdogan is an international criminal. His illicit activities are wide-ranging, perhaps involved in virtually all major internal illegal activities - including waging war on regional Kurds and complicity with ISIS.

Writing for the German publication Neues Deutschland, Roland Etzel said world leaders ignore his war on his own people.

“Erdogan expressed readiness to do a dirty job at the Syrian-Turkish border. His reward is Europe’s silence about Turkey’s crimes,” said Etzel.

They include:

  • training ISIS fighters on Turkish territory;

  • arming them with heavy weapons and munitions;

  • supplying them with deadly sarin and other toxic agents;

  • treating their wounded in Turkish hospitals;

  • permitting their free movement back and forth to and from Syria and Iraq;

  • refining and selling their stolen Syrian and Iraqi oil;

  • complicity with their illicit drug trade and sales of stolen antiquities; as well as

  • human trafficking.

Previous articles explained nothing of importance happens in Turkey without Erdogan’s knowledge, approval and involvement - including illicit schemes enriching him, his family members and other top regime officials hugely.

In early December, Turkey’s Today’s Zaman surprisingly discussed German ARD television’s documentary on human trafficking on Turkish territory - complicit with ISIS, saying the following:

“Two correspondents from the TV channel filmed a Yazidi family buying their relatives to save them from ISIL and spoke to witnesses.” 

“The Yazidi family contacted a liaison office of ISIL in Turkey through a Kurdish man named Abu Mital, who works as an intermediary for ISIL, in order to purchase a mother, her three children and an 11-year-old boy from ISIL and return them to their family.”

ISIS demanded and received thousands of dollars before permitting family members to reunite. 

Is Erdogan involved in what’s going on? Given his range illicit activities complicit with ISIS, it’s hard imagining otherwise. 

He could easily stop what’s happening. Failing to act suggests complicity - profiting from human trafficking, another one of his dirty self-enrichment schemes.

German TV channels NDR and SWR published the following on their web sites”

ISIS “offers women and underage children in a kind of virtual slave market with for-sale photos…The transfer of money, as the reporter discovered, takes place through a liaison office in Turkey.”

“For weeks, NDR and SWR accompanied a Yazidi negotiator, who, on behalf of the families, negotiates with (ISIS) for the release of the slaves and their children.”

“(T)he women are sold in a digital slave market to the highest bidder - 15,000 to 20,000 US dollars are a typical price.” 

“Similar sums for ransom are also required to free Yazidis. The money is then transferred via (ISIS) liaison offices and middlemen to the terrorist group.”

“NDR and SWR were present at the liberation of a woman and her three small children, aged between two and four years old, and followed the negotiations.” 

“How many Yazidi slaves are still ‘owned’ by (ISIS) is unclear. Experts estimate that there still could be hundreds.”

The negotiator middleman told NDR and SWR he transferred over $2.5 million to ISIS from families to secure release of their women and children.

ISIS advertises its captives, assigns them numbers, and posts their photos on the WhatsApp Messenger smartphone app.

In response to information revealed, the Turkish-based Gaziantep Bar Association (GBA) filed a criminal complaint against "Turkey's National Intelligence Organization (MIT) and law-enforcement officers that have committed neglect of duty and misconduct by not taking required measures, and not carrying out preventive and required intelligence activities before the media covered the said incidents.”

GBA demanded prosecutions of individuals involved in “human trafficking, prostitution, genocide, deprivation of liberty, crimes against humanity, and migrant smuggling” - all international crimes.

Gaziantep is a virtual open slave market, ISIS able to operate freely, Turkish authorities doing nothing to intervene. 

It bears repeating. It’s hard imagining this happening without state knowledge and likely involvement to the highest regime levels, including Erdogan.

Prominent Kurdish human rights lawyer Reyhan Yalcindag said “(a)n office has been established by ISIS members in Antep.” It operates openly without state interference. 

“(A)t that office, women and children kidnapped by ISIS are sold for high amounts of money. Where are the ministers and law enforcement officers…who are talking about stability?” 

“Turkey signed several international treaties, but it is the number one country when it comes to professional non-compliance with human rights treaties.”

Yazidi Human Rights Organization-International chairman Mirizai Ismail said “(a)ccording to many escaped women and girls to whom I spoke in Northern Iraq, the abducted Yazidis, mostly women and children, number over 7,000.”

“Some of those women and girls have had to watch 7, 8, and 9-year-old children bleed to death before their eyes, after being raped by ISIS militia multiple times a day.”

“I met mothers, whose children were torn from them by ISIS. These same mothers came to plead for the return of their children, only to be informed, that they, the mothers, had been fed the flesh of their own children by ISIS. Children murdered, then fed to their own mothers.”

“ISIS militias have burned many Yezidi girls alive for refusing to convert and marry ISIS men. Young Yazidi boys are being trained to be jihadists and suicide bombers.” 

“All of our temples in the ISIS controlled area are exploded and destroyed. Why? Because we are not Muslims, and because our path is the path of peace. For this, we are being burned alive: for living as men and women of peace.”

As a NATO member, US-led states turn a blind eye to horrific Turkish crimes too grave to ignore, including complicity with ISIS’ illicit activities and atrocities.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

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