Istanbul airport terror attack: Alleged planner identified

Candles are placed in front the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Wednesday, June 29, 2016. The Brandenburg Gate was illuminated with Turkey's national flag after suicide attackers killed dozens and wounded more than 140 at Istanbul's busy Ataturk Airport late Tuesday, the latest in a series of bombings to strike Turkey in recent months. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

(CNN) The organizer of the Istanbul airport massacre is a well-known terrorist who served as a top soldier in the ISIS war ministry, a U.S. official said.

Akhmed Chatayev, from Russia’s North Caucasus region, directed the three suicide bombers who killed 43 people Tuesday, said rep Michael McCaul, chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security.
 Turkish media reported that a man nicknamed “Akhmed One-Arm” organized the attack.
While his whereabouts are unclear, his ties to jihadist activities are well documented, McCaul said.
“He’s … probably the No. 1 enemy in the Northern Caucus region of Russia. He’s traveled to Syria on many occasions and became one of the top lieutenants for the minister of war for ISIS operations,” he told CNN’s Brianna Keilar.

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