Turkey deports Dutch journalist on suspected terror ‘link’

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Dutch police tipped off Turkish authorities about Johanna Cornelia Boersma’s association with Jabhat al Nusra terror group, a senior official of Turkish presidency says.

Dutch police had requested for information about the journalist's movements in and out of Turkey, officials say.
Dutch police had requested for information about the journalist’s movements in and out of Turkey, officials say. (AFP Archive)

Turkey on Thursday deported a Dutch national for her suspected links to Syria-focussed Jabhat al Nusra, a terrorist group with historic links to Al Qaeda, the Turkish presidential communications director said.

Fahrettin Altun said Johanna Cornelia Boersma, a journalist with Dutch newspaper Het Financieel Dagblad , was deported after the Dutch police tipped off Turkish counterparts about her terror links.

“The Netherlands told Turkey that the reporter, who was deported today, had links to Jabhat al Nusra. We acted on intelligence from the Netherlands and took a precautionary measure,” he said.

The journalist is a suspect in an ongoing criminal probe into terrorism, but not of terrorism, Dutch media reported, citing the country’s prosecutors.

Fahrettin Altun

@fahrettinaltun

The Netherlands told Turkey that the reporter, who was deported today, had links to Jabhat al-Nusra.

We acted on intelligence from the Netherlands and took a precautionary measure.

 ‘We won’t speculate’

Altun said, “if a credible foreign government agency tells you that one of their citizens has links to terrorism, you don’t take any chances.”

“The Dutch authorities alone are in a position to explain why they arrived at that conclusion. We won’t speculate on the credibility of their intelligence.”

Dutch officers carry out extra patrols at the Central Station in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 22 March 2016 following the triple bomb attacks in the Belgian capital that killed about 35 people.
Dutch officers carry out extra patrols at the Central Station in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 22 March 2016 following the triple bomb attacks in the Belgian capital that killed about 35 people. (AFP)

Earlier, in a statement, Altun said the Dutch had requested “for information about Boersma’s movements in and out of Turkey.”

“Rest assured that Ms Boersma’s deportation was in no way related to her journalistic activities during her stay in Turkey,” the statement said, adding Turkey had issued her a press card, which was valid until January 31, 2019.

Reuters news agency quoting her paper said she had been visiting an immigration office in Istanbul to extend her visa on Wednesday when she was detained.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies
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