Arrest warrant for Australian doctor who joined IS

Arrest warrant for Australian doctor who joined IS
2 min read
18 June, 2015
An arrest warrant has been issued in Australia for a doctor who was shown encouraging other medical professionals to join IS.
The Australian doctor had travelled to IS controlled Syria [AFP]
An arrest warrant was issued Thursday for an Australian-trained doctor who appeared in an Islamic State propaganda video which urges other medical professionals to join the jihadists, police said.

Tareq Kamleh was shown in the slick video, uploaded to YouTube in April, identifying himself as Abu Yusuf and explaining that he travelled to the city of Raqa in Syria to use his medical skills in the IS cause.

Police said he was an Adelaide-trained doctor who has worked in hospitals in South Australia, Queensland and the Northern Territory.

"The South Australian Joint Counter Terrorism team has obtained an arrest warrant for Dr Tareq Kamleh," police said in a statement.

They allege he is a member of, and recruited for, a terrorist organisation and that he entered a prohibited area under Australia's Criminal Code Act.

"Should Dr Kamleh return to Australia, this warrant authorises law enforcement to arrest him immediately," the statement said.

Australia raised its threat level to "high" last September and has since carried out a series of counter-terrorism raids with alarm fuelled by the departure of dozens of Australians to fight in Iraq and Syria.

The government of Prime Minister Tony Abbott is presently working to amend the law to strip dual nationals linked to terrorism of their citizenship.

"If you are just an Australian citizen and you are a terrorist and you come back to Australia, we will lock you up," Abbott reiterated to parliament on Thursday.

"If you are a dual citizen and you leave Australia to fight for a terrorist army, we never want you back."

Speaking in a broad Australian accent, Kamleh said in the video: "I saw this as part of my jihad for Islam to help the Muslims in the area that I could, which is in the medical field.

"I wish I'd come a lot sooner."