“Terrorists, with beards and long hair” possibly identified as members of that moribund organization that is on its last legs and repudiated everywhere by all Muslims.
“Turkey: Possible al-Qaeda link to US consulate attack,” from AKI, July 10 (thanks to C.C.):
Istanbul, 10 July (AKI) – While no group has claimed responsibility for the attack on the US consulate in Istanbul, there is growing speculation that al-Qaeda was behind the shootings.
Turkish security sources told local media that all three assailants were from eastern Turkey and were suspected of being members of a group linked to al-Qaeda.
Three policemen and three gunmen died in a gun battle outside the US consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul on Wednesday….
While no staff were injured inside the consulate, the US ambassador to Turkey condemned the attack as an “act of terrorism” and US State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said he could not rule out suspicions that al-Qaeda was behind the attack….
According to the Hurriyet newspaper, Wednesday’s attack may have been to avenge the death of an al-Qaeda militant reportedly killed in Afghanistan by a US bombing.
The al-Qaeda militant and two of the three dead consulate assailants are from the same southeastern province in Turkey.
An official told Hurriyet that the three gunmen who were killed in the attack had only recently returned to Turkey after a period of time in Afghanistan. This has led to speculation that they may have received training at an al-Qaeda camp.
The official also added that the assailants were members of a Turkish Sunni Islamic fundamentalist group, known as the Great Eastern Islamic Raiders Front, or IBDA-C.
Istanbul police raided a number of addresses across the city and reportedly seized documents related to al- Qaeda.