In an interview on Kurdistan 24 news station, a man from Virginia, Mohamad Jamal Khweis, termed as ISIS defector surrendered to Kurdish Peshmerga fighters on March 18, 2016, and expressed regret by saying that his decision of following a young woman to Iraq was a ‘bad’ one.
He stated that he had traveled to Mosul, Iraq with a female, whom he had met while traveling in Turkey. Mr. Khweis indicated that she knows some someone who could take them from Turkey to Syria and then further Mosul and hence he made the decision of going ahead.
Both of them opted for a bus to the Turkish border and then took a taxi to Syria, which was coordinated by the sister of the woman, who was married to an Islamic State member. Both of them stayed in a house with foreigners, including Russians and Asians.
Mr. Khweis stated that on the way he even regretted his decision and wanted to go home when he saw himself living in this environment and felt things weren’t good.
The identity of the woman wasn’t known immediately. Officials stated that they believe that a network of women has been established for recruiting new fighters.
After a month was spent with terrorists, Mr. Khweis had enough of militants and took the decision of escaping. He said that he wasn’t agreeable with extremist ideology.
According to sources, Mr. Khweis stated that he didn’t see them as good Muslims and wanted to go back to U.S. Once he arrived in Mosul, the militants started indoctrinating him and other recruits.
He stated that there was an Imam, who taught Sharia and religion. He didn’t complete the entire Sharia and wasn’t agreeable with the ideology, and this was when he wanted to escape.
Although Kurdish forces described Mr.Khweis as an Islamic State fighter, he didn’t mention about any combat activity and most of the time was spent with terrorists learning about the religion.
Ultimately he was surrendered to Kurdish forces near Sinjar town.