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American ISIS suspect sent back to U.S. by Turkey

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Image: A man, a U.S. citizen of Arab descent and Islamic State suspect who
A man stands on the no-man's land between Turkey and Greece earlier this week. -
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Ali Can Zeray/Demiroren News Agency
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ANKARA, Turkey — An American who is suspected of fighting for the Islamic State terror group has been deported to the United States, Turkey's interior minister said Friday.

The man, who was stranded in a no man's land between Greece and Turkey, was put on a plane "a short time ago," said Suleyman Soylu.

The suspect had been stuck in the border area for five days.

On Thursday, Turkey's Interior Ministry said repatriation was underway after the U.S. agreed to accept him and provided travel documents.

NBC News has not independently verified the man's identity or nationality.

This week Turkey began a long-promised operation to send captured foreign ISIS militants to their home nations. One American fighter has already been sent to the U.S., it said.

Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said last week that Turkey was not a "hotel" for militants, adding that there are around 1,200 of them in Turkish jails.

The situation is complicated by several Western states having stripped known ISIS fighters and collaborators of their citizenship, essentially leaving them stateless.

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