Fighters' choice: 'die a martyr or face jail'

They are the postcards from Syria that look anything but picturesque.

Mehmet Biber, one of six Sydney men that police allege were recruited to fight with terrorist organisations in Syria, has claimed he is only there to do aid work while on holidays.

But photos posted online by the young Turkish-Australian dual citizen from Merrylands tell a different story - one that features dead soldiers, war-torn buildings, the thick smoke of bomb blasts and a fellow ''aid worker'' lying, bloodied, on a makeshift hospital bed after being shot in the face.

Police allege Mr Biber travelled to Syria between June and July to fight against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad and has not returned since.

Hamdi Alqudsi, 39, allegedly provided money, resources and contacts for Mr Biber and five others to travel to Syria to join terrorist organisations including Jubhat Al-Nusra.

On Tuesday, Mr Alqudsi became the first Australian charged under foreign incursion laws since the Syrian war began. He was due to be released on bail on Wednesday evening after members of the Muslim community pooled $10,000 surety for his release.

Amin Iman Mohamad, 23, from Lidcombe, was arrested at Brisbane airport and charged with preparing to engage in foreign hostile activities.

The whereabouts of the other five, including Mr Biber, are not known. His last photo was posted on October 28 of a bloodied man lying on a hospital bed with the caption: ''A close brother to us part of the aid work was injured, shot at by a tank. May Allah grant him quick healing and punish these kuffar by the hands of the mujahideen.''

Days earlier he uploaded photos of smoking buildings, damage caused by barrel bombs from the helicopters ''of the army of pigs'' and a dead man killed by three bullets to his back.

Self-appointed Australian representative for the Free Syrian Army, Zaky Mallah, said the arrests had left the five men with two choices - to stay in Syria until they are martyred or return to Australia and face jail.

On Wednesday, parts of the Muslim community fired back at the government and police, alleging foul play and calling the arrests hypocritical and outrageous.

Mr Alqudsi's lawyer Zali Burrows said her client was granted bail on Tuesday and had raised surety by Tuesday evening but was kept in custody for a further 24 hours because he was mistakenly recorded as ''bail denied'' in computer systems.

''He is very distressed, he was entitled to be released last night but was prevented from doing so,'' she said. ''It's been pretty frustrating.''

The fringe Muslim groups Hizb ut-Tahrir and Al-Risalah held an emergency protest in Lakemba in support of the arrested men.

''The government has some explaining to do,'' said Hizb ut-Tahrir spokesman Uthman Badar.

''Since when did making [a] personal sacrifice to assist the oppressed become an immoral act? Why has it been made a criminal offence? Why is it OK for Australian troops to partake in conflicts overseas under the pretext of supporting the oppressed, but not so for Muslims?''

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