Former Taliban fighter calls for Australian Muslims to defend Islam

A former Taliban fighter has reportedly called on Australian Muslims to reclaim Islam from ISIL extremists.

Joseph “Jihad Jack” Thomas believes Islam is “being defamed” by ISIL, the Daily Telegraph reports. Thomas travelled to Afghanistan in 2001 to train with the Taliban and returned to Australia in 2003. He was the first person convicted under terrorism laws introduced after September 11.

In an open letter to fellow Australian Muslims, Thomas reportedly said ISIL is not Islam, but a “bunch of insane lunatics”. He said Muslims needed to be ideal citizens to showcase the real Islam.

“I’ve told them we need to be the best work colleagues, the best fathers and the best men who don’t restrict their women, because Islam is not like that, you don’t kill innocent people,” he said.