- 25-year-old Bashir Mohammad is a former al-Qaeda jihadist who found Jesus
- Less than fours years ago, he fought in the Syrian civil war with the Nusra Front
- However, he now fears his former Jihadis will target him
25-year-old Bashir Mohammad is a former al-Qaeda jihadist who abandoned terrorist ideology and turned to Jesus Christ.
In a recent interview with the New York Times, Mohammad said he fought in the Syrian civil war with the Nusra Front, an al-Qaeda affiliate.
In a remarkable transformation, he is now a devout Christian and attends weekly Bible readings in Istanbul, Turkey, where he lives.
A cousin first radicalized him as a 15-year-old boy before he later joined Nusra Front in 2012 about a year after the outbreak of the Syrian civil war.
Mohammad said that as a fighter, he witnessed extreme brutality against perceived enemies of God, adding: “They used to tell us these people were the enemies of God and so I looked on these executions positively.”
However, he began questioning Nusra's extreme brutality after noticing that there was no difference between the group and the Syrian government it was fighting.
He said he therefore risked his life to desert Nusra, adding: “I went to Nusra in search of my God, but after I saw Muslims killing Muslims, I realized there was something wrong.”
He and his wife Hevin Rashid later fled to Turkey. His turning point came when Ms Rashid fell seriously ill in 2015 and, in desperation, allowed Christian preachers to pray for her.
When his wife's health improved a few days later, he began attending Christian study and prayer sessions and soon converted after a dream in which he received a sign from Jesus.
Speaking of his conversion, Mohammad said: “There’s a big gap between the god I used to worship and the one I worship now. We used to worship in fear. Now everything has changed.”
However, he still protects his and his wife's identity for fear of reprisals from his former jihadist allies. Asked what he'll do if they caught up with him, he said, "I trust in God."
Watch a reverse instance of a Christian converting to Islam in the video below.