The Islamic Great Eastern Raiders–Front (IBDA-C) is a Sunni Salafist group that supports Islamic rule in Turkey and believes that Turkey’s present secular leadership is “illegal.” It has been known to cooperate with various opposition elements in Turkey in attempts to destabilize the country’s political structure. The group supports the establishment of a “pure Islamic” state, to replace the present “corrupt” Turkish regime that is cooperating with the West. Its primary goal is the establishment of the Federative Islamic State, a goal backed by armed terrorist attacks primarily against civilian targets. It has been active since the mid-1970s.
The IBDA-C has engaged in activities that minimize personal risk, such as bombings, throwing Molotov cocktails and sabotage. The group has announced its actions and targets in publications to its members, who are free to launch independent attacks. The IBDA-C typically has attacked civilian targets, including: churches, charities, minority-affiliated targets, television transmitters, newspapers, prosecular journalists, Ataturk statues, taverns, banks, clubs, and tobacco shops. One of the IBDA-C’s more renowned attacks was the killing of 37 people in a firebomb attack in July 1993 on a hotel in Sivas. The group claimed responsibility for a quadruple bomb attack in Istanbul in February 2002. In 1994, the IBDA-C was tied to an attempt to assassinate a Jewish businessman and an attack on the Greek Orthodox Church in Istanbul. In 1992, the group had unconfirmed involvement in an attack on an Istanbul synagogue. Turkish police believe that the IBDA-C has also claimed responsibilities for attacks carried out by other groups to elevate its image.
Specific sources of external aid are unknown.