linked raised Aussie ‘sheik’ Junaid Thorne encourages jihadists
Cultural camel dust: the sons of an Aboriginal Muslim convert mother Â and a Paki father who raised them in Soddy Barbaria turned out to be radical headbangers, too radical even for the Wahabite Saudis. Last year the mother got a fair bit of media coverage when she whined about her brood being locked up. Â Mohammedan droppings of that sort Â is to Australia as desirable as the AIDS virus or the Bubonic Plague.
THE brother of an Australian man jailed for terrorism-related offences in Saudi Arabia has been delivering lectures at some of the nation’s most controversial Islamic centres while encouraging jihadists to show their “might” against disbelievers.
Perth man Junaid Thorne, a 24-year-old who has spent much of his life in Saudi Arabia, has spoken at Sydney’s al-Risalah and Melbourne’s al-Furqan Islamic centres in recent weeks as part of a lecture tour backed by little-known radical organisation Millatu Ibrahim, which is banned in Germany.
Police and terrorism experts yesterday said they were not aware of the organisation having an active presence in Australia.
At al-Risalah, he sat in front of a Millatu Ibrahim banner – featuring the logo of the al-Qa’ida-linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant used by the most extreme Sunni fighters in Syria – to deliver his first “public lecture” since being deported from Riyadh in July.
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His deportation came after his brother, Shayden, was sentenced to 4 1/2 years in a Riyadh prison for possessing terrorism-related materials and supporting and encouraging terrorism. Mr Thorne, whose father is a Noongar Aboriginal man, was detained for two months for protesting against his brother’s arrest in December 2011.
According to those who attended the Sydney lecture last month, “Sheik Muhammad Junaid” told followers that businessmen should be donating money to jihadists around the world.
“Support oppressed Muslims across the world, support the mujaheddin,” he said, according to a summary of the speech that appeared on social media after the event.
“Money comes and goes, but what remains is what you gave in the cause of Allah. Most of the Ayat (numbered Koranic verses) mention financing jihad before jihad, in relation to the individual (sic) performance.”
He said jihadists should not fight among one another, in a possible reference to hostility towards the ISIL by other Sunni groups in Syria.
“You have a noble intention and objective, fighting against each other makes us sad. Show your might against the kuffar (disbelievers) and be merciful towards each other.”
Mr Thorne backed the summary of the speech online, saying “may Allah reward” the person who posted it. Repeated efforts to contact Mr Thorne online, through his family and at his local Islamic centre in Perth, were unsuccessful yesterday.
In other online postings, Mr Thorne indicated that he was involved in a group called Millatu Ibrahim Perth and quoted American-born al-Qa’ida militant Anwar al-Awlaki, who was killed in a US drone strike in Yemen in 2011. Millatu Ibrahim was founded in Germany in 2011 by al-Qa’ida-linked Austrian man Mohamed Mahmoud and German ex-rapper Abou Maleeq, but was quickly banned by authorities because of its extreme Salafist leanings. Leaflets promoting the lectures at al-Risalah and al-Furqan say Mr Thorne’s talks had been organised by Millatu Ibrahim Australia.
Al-Risalah, a former bookstore in Bankstown in Sydney’s west, also uses the Millatu Ibrahim logo as its Facebook profile picture.
NSW Police said it was aware of the group’s reputation in Europe, but had no evidence of a strong local following.
“NSW Police is aware of Millatu Ibrahim, a Salafist group active in Europe, specifically Germany,” a spokeswoman said. “However, the group is not believed to be active in NSW.”
Millatu Ibrahim Perth’s website was recently closed down, but it has used its Facebook page to declare a hatred of disbelievers.
“We hate the Kuffar and everything that they worship,” it reads. “We hate their constitutions, we reject their way of life, we reject their political systems, we reject their parliaments, we reject their democracy, capitalism, liberalism, socialism, communism and every other filthy disbelieving ‘ism’ that has come to act as a hindrance from Islam, the pure religion of Allah to rule from the east to the west.”
Al-Risalah has claimed its imam is terrorist Bilal Khazal, who was sentenced to 12 years’ jail in 2008 after compiling a book promoting violence against non-Muslims, and has hosted several other radical sheiks.
Al-Furqan was raided by police as part of a counter-terrorism operation in 2012.
Before founding Millatu Ibrahim, Mr Mahmoud was jailed for leading the Global Islamic Media Front, which disseminated al-Qa’ida propaganda.
He was arrested by Turkish authorities near the Syrian border in May, after Millatu Ibrahim was accused of encouraging its followers to fight in Syria, Yemen and Mali.
Mr Maleeq, formerly known as Denis Cuspert, was reportedly injured in September while fighting against government forces in Syria.