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By global standards, the threat of Islamist violence in Australia is low. Generally, Australia has not proven fertile ground for global terrorist organizations, despite some attempts at recruitment and fundraising. The overwhelming majority of those convicted under the country’s anti-terrorism laws belonged to small, independent, self-starting groups with no clear connection to established global terrorist organizations. The few individuals who had links to such organizations have long since left them and show little, if any, intention of undertaking large-scale terrorist acts in Australia. Notably, however, the threat of terrorism associated with the Islamic State (ISIS) has grown in recent years, as the group has gained strength in the Muslim world. That threat, and the organization’s larger appeal, continues, despite the collapse of the ISIS caliphate in Iraq and Syria. 


Level of Islamist Activity: 
Low
Islamist Activity: 

The Benbrika group

In November 2005, Australian intelligence and law enforcement agencies carried out the largest counterterrorism raids in the country’s history. Twenty-one people were arrested and charged across Sydney and Melbourne between November 2005 and March 2006.1 The senior figure in the affair was Abdul Nacer Benbrika, also known as Abu Bakr, an immigrant from Algeria who, at the time of his arrest, was in his mid-40s. The rest of those charged were considerably younger, mostly between 18 and 28. Several had minor criminal records for fraud, theft and firearms charges.2

 

Those in the Melbourne cluster were all charged with being members of a terrorist organization involved in the fostering or preparation of a terrorist act (a legal designation under Australian law). Some were also charged with providing resources to a terrorist organization. Benbrika himself was additionally charged with intentionally directing the activities of a terrorist organization.3 The Sydney cluster faced more serious charges of conspiring to plan a terrorist attack.

 

In February 2009, Benbrika was sentenced to 15 years in prison with a non-parole period of 12 years – considerably less than the maximum 25-year sentence available under the relevant legislation.4 It is possible this was because the group had not begun plotting to blow up specific targets. In contrast, the Sydney cluster was more advanced, with considerable stockpiles of weapons and chemicals.5 In October 2009, following the longest-running criminal trial in Australian legal history, a total of nine members were convicted and sentenced to prison terms ranging from 21 to 28 years.6

 

Links between the Benbrika group and global terrorist organizations appear sparse. Only one Melbourne cluster member attended a training camp overseas in Afghanistan, where he reportedly pledged allegiance to then-Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.7 The Sydney cluster had some international experience, with at least three of its members having visited Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) training camps in Pakistan.8 Benbrika himself, however, appears to have had no sustained contact with global terrorist organizations.

 

Ideologically, the Benbrika group adhered to Wahhabbi-Salafism. First, it viewed the world as divided between “true” Muslims and nonbelievers. Second, it believed that Islam was under attack from the Western world, particularly the United States, but also Australia. Third, the members believed that perceived Western campaigns against Islam in Afghanistan and Iraq obligated them, as devout Muslims, to “defend” Islam by performing violent acts in Australia.9

 

On November 3, 2017, Attorney-General George Brandis denied parole to Abdul Nacer Benbrika and sentenced him to another three years in prison.10 Throughout his sentence, Benbrika refused to enroll in government-operated deradicalization programs. The Australian government still considers Benbrika a dangerous agent of radicalization. Authorities announced plans to transfer Benbrika to Barwon Prison, a maximum security detention facility for high-risk criminals. Although his sentence ostensibly expires in 2020, the federal Home Affairs Minister can appeal the Supreme Court to continue the detention of anyone convicted of terrorism. Yet, in similar cases, Supreme Court justices indicated their unwillingness to indefinitely detain Australian citizens.11

 

Operation Neath

In August 2009, five men were arrested and charged with conspiring to carry out a terrorist attack on Holsworthy Barracks, an Australian Army training base, during Australia’s second-longest counter-terrorism operation.12 The arrested group members – individuals that were part of a suspected 18 person cell with alleged connections to Somalian Islamist group and al-Qaeda affiliate al-Shabaab – sought to kill as many Australian soldiers as they could with automatic weapons before they themselves were killed.13 The matter is currently before the courts.

 

There appears to have been no well-formulated overarching ideology. Although the group was definitively Wahhabbi-Salafi in orientation, its political narrative likewise appears reactive and defensive, rather than actively imperial. Members expressed anger at the presence of Australian troops in Muslim countries, although they did not mention specific places by name.14

 

All of those charged group members were young and publicly available information suggests the group was horizontal in structure. All suspected group members are Somali Australians and American authorities allege that it has actively recruited Somali-American Muslims. Australian news reports suggest several members of the group attempted to travel to Somalia to train with al-Shabaab. A spokesman for al-Shabaab, however, denied the allegations.15

 

The Islamic State (IS)

Islamic State adherents have become more active in Australia in recent years. The most prolific raid against IS involved 800 law enforcement agents in Brisbane and Sydney.16 Intelligence suggested that Muhammad Ali Baryalei, a senior Australian member of the Islamic State, ordered Australian Islamists to “kidnap and murder a randomly chosen non-Muslim member of the Public.”17 Law-enforcement officials arrested 16 people, although at the time only one, Omarjan Azari, was charged. Omarjan Azari pleaded not guilty to preparing to commit an act of terrorism, though he did admit to sending funds to ISIS.18 His trial began in April 2017,19 and in March 2019 the Supreme Court in Parramatta sentenced him to 18 years in prison.20 As of late 2016, 15 people were charged using the intelligence gathered in Operation Appleby.21 Australia’s investigation i is ongoing. In November 2019, law enforcement authorities charged Hamdi Alqudsi for directing activities of a terrorist organization. Alqudsi was already serving an 8-year prison sentence for coordinating with Muhammad Ali Baryalei.22

 

In August 2017, Khaled and Mahmoud Khayat were charged with two counts of preparing or planning a terrorist attack. The two brothers first attempted to smuggle a homemade bomb onto a July 15th Etihad flight in the suitcase of a third brother, who was not aware of the plot.23 The bomb was hidden inside a meat mincer, but the bag may have been too heavy to be checked, prompting the Khayats to change their plans and abort the attack. Authorities believe that an ISIS controller sent the men the bomb-making materials through air cargo.24 Then, Khaled and Mahmoud began to build a device that would release hydrogen sulphide, a toxic chemical, in a crowded public place. They were apprehended by police before completing the device and, in September 2019, both brothers were convicted and sentenced to life in prison.25 Both Khaled and Mahmoud were introduced to their ISIS handler via their other brother, Tarek Khayat, in Syria.26

 

Homegrown ISIS affiliations are an increasing concern. In all, as of 2017, over 165 Australians were estimated to have journeyed to Syria and Iraq to join the Islamic State.27 The same year, Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) head Duncan Lewis said that approximately 40 of these foreign fighters had returned to Australia.28 Subsequently, in July 2019, Sydney authorities arrested Australian national and 20-year-old Isaak el Matari, a self-proclaimed “general of Islamic State.” El Matari was charged with three crimes, including membership in ISIS and planning terrorist attacks. El Matari planned to smuggle contraband into Australia, set up an operating base in the nearby Blue Mountains, and execute terror attacks throughout Sydney. He had already collected American military fatigues and sought a visa to Pakistan, where he allegedly planned to illegally enter Afghanistan. Law enforcement personnel flagged el Matari in 2018 when he returned from Lebanon. Authorities also arrested two men in connection with el Matari: Radwan Dakkak, a 23-year-old male from Toongabbie on charges of ISIS membership, and a 30-year-old associate on fraud charges.29

 

In 2018, Somali national Hassan Khalif Shire Ali crashed a car full of gas cylinders in the center of Melbourne and proceeded to stab three people, killing one. Police shot Shire Ali, and he later died of his wounds. Federal agencies had been aware of Shire Ali, but never monitored him because they believed he did not pose a national security risk. The 30-year-old claimed affiliation with ISIS, and authorities had canceled his passport in 2015 over concerns that he would join the organization overseas.

 

These concerns are linked to Australia’s top counterterrorism priority: managing the potential risk posed by returning Australian fighters from Syria and Iraq, as well as securing the repatriation of orphaned children of Australian ISIS members from abroad. Intensive deradicalization programs are being developed to successfully reintegrate these children into Australian society, but the challenge of returning fighters is proving difficult.30 The problem, moreover, is significant in scope; in the wake of the U.S.-led military victory over the organization in Iraq and Syria, many ISIS fighters have moved on while leaving family members behind in Syria. By some estimates, thousands of ISIS family members – including Australian citizens – are currently residing in Syria, with militants still operating in Iraq. The Australian government is reluctant to take these citizens back home, even if they are apprehended.31 

 

Individuals Connected to Terrorism

Some Australian citizens have made connections with Islamist terrorist groups overseas, while others are foreign nationals who attempted unsuccessfully to infiltrate Australia. None are presently active members of radical Islamist organizations.

 

Musa Cerantonio is an Australian preacher who used social media to express support for the Islamic State and propagate ISIL-related propaganda.32 He also allegedly associated with Singaporean ISIL sympathizer Zulfikar Shariff.33 He was first arrested in 2014 in the Philippines while allegedly attempting to travel to Syria and was deported back to Australia.34 Cerantonio is an influential advocate for ISIL.35 In May 2016, he, along with five others, was arrested for attempting to sail to Indonesia, from where they were planning to travel to ISIL-controlled territory.36

 

Numan Haider was the perpetrator of the September 2014 Endeavour Hills attack, in which he stabbed two anti-terrorism officers from the Joint Counter-Terrorism Team.37 He was killed during the attack. Haider was also allegedly associated with Al-Furqan. Subsequent inquiries into the incident have revealed evidence suggesting Haider viewed ISIL propaganda on his mobile phone two days prior to the attack.38 He also attempted to find out then-Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s schedule. Haider, who came from a moderate Muslim family, was supposedly radicalized “within months.”39

 

Omar Succarieh was accused of both funding terrorists abroad and attempting to aid Agim Kruezi’s (failed) migration to Syria.40 Arrested in 2014, he allegedly financed Jabhat Al-Nusra.41 Police believed he sent at least $27,000 to the group. Succarieh pleaded guilty to several charges in 2016 and received a four-and-a-half-year prison sentence. After serving the majority of that sentence, Succarieh was released from prison in January 2020.42

 

Sevdet Besim was arrested for plotting the foiled 2015 Anzac Day attack.43 Besim intended to “run over a police officer, cut off his head and go on a violent rampage that would end in his own death.”44 Besim plotted the attack online with a teenager living in the UK.

 

Haisem Zahab was arrested in February 2017 for assisting ISIS in the development of long-range guided missiles. These plans were not for Australia, but for use in Iraq and Syria.45 His arrest came after Kuwaiti authorties alleged that a relative of his, Hicham Zahab, tried to supply the Islamic State with surface-to-air missiles. In 2015, the Australian Federal Police seized $500,000 from Hicham Zahab and his family under proceeds of crime laws, but they are believed to have fled to Syria.46

 

Momena Shoma, a Bangladeshi national, was sentenced to 42 years in prison in June 2019 for stabbing a man in the name of jihad in February 2018.47 Ihsas Khan was sentenced in May 2019 to a minimum of 27 years in prison for stabbing a man multiple times with intent to kill while shouting “Allahu akbar.”48 Two teenage boys, one of whom had links to terrorism, killed service station attendant Zeeshan Akhbar in the 2017 and the Queanbeyan stabbing incident, which also saw three others injured.49

 

Non-violent Islamist groups

One of the most prominent groups is the Islamic Information and Services Network of Australasia, headed by Samir Mohtadi. This organization is more politically moderate than other Wahhabbi-Salafi groups. Mohtadi testified during the Benbrika trials that he warned Benbrika he would notify the authorities if Benbrika intended to do “anything stupid,” and that Australia was a “peaceful country.”50

 

A prominent non-violent extremist movement is the Al-Furqan Islamic Information Centre, a bookstore that “doubled” as a musallah, primarily for young Muslims, in South Melbourne.51 It was led by Harun Mehicevic after he decided to part ways with the Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaah (ASWJ) centre in 2011.52 Like ASWJ, Al-Furqan’s theological position is built upon Salafism. While it is unclear if Mehicevic advocated for politicized Salafism, the organization was linked with at least six alleged and known Australian terrorists: Neil Prakash, Numan Haider, Adnan Karabegovic, Sevdet Besim, Harun Causevic, and Mohomod Unais Mohomed Ameen.53 Prakash and Ameen both appeared in ISIL propaganda videos from ISIL controlled territories.54 After being targeted in multiple police raids beginning in 2012, Mehicevic ended Al-Furqan’s operations in 2015.55 However, some alleged that Al-Furqan operates covertly from a suburban leisure center in Dandenong, Melbourne.56

 

Mahicevic himself has not been accused or charged for terrorist offenses. Rather, some people claim he was asked to assist the Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO) by leveraging his position to “spy” on ISIL.57

 

Undoubtedly the most visible Islamist organization in Australia is Hizb ut-Tahrir (HuT). The group attracted extensive media attention following the 2005 London bombings, when banning the group became a topic of public discussion in Australia.58 HuT treats the establishment of “the Khalifah system as explicit ideological aspiration.”59 Its methodology relies on non-violent resistance against secular democracy, as well as demonstrating the intellectual, moral, and functional superiority.60 As such, HuT relies heavily on its online publishing arm, wherein critiques of Australian policies, particularly those on counter-terrorism, are commonplace.61 However, it has few members in Australia who are mostly confined to Sydney.62 


Islamism and Society: 

As a nation with a British political inheritance, a very small (but growing) Muslim population, and a strong, enduring alliance with the United States, Australia is not a welcoming environment for Islamist movements - particularly violent ones. Islamism has no discernible public support as an ideology. Anyone who calls publicly for the incorporation of any type of Islamic law (typically family law) into the Australian legal system faces swift denunciation.63

 

As the Muslim population of Australia continues to grow, both through population expansion and immigration, Muslim organizations can be expected to expand in size and number. The increase in the number of mosques is inevitable as a result, but as of yet there is no evidence of a surge in mosque construction. It is probably true that HuT’s voice is gradually becoming louder (facilitated by media attention) but it remains closely monitored and of marginal influence.64

 

Funding streams for Islamic organizations in Australia are difficult to discern. Would-be terrorist groups in Australia are not reliant on overseas funding for their plots, though they are known to have been recipients of funding from both domestic sources and overseas governments for some time. One of the most active overseas financiers is the Saudi government, which has allegedly spent around AU$120 million (roughly USD $91 million) in Australia since the 1970s.65 It is reasonable to assume that this financial support played a role in the emergence of Wahhabbi-Salafism in Australia. In this regard, there have been periods of alarm in the Australian press over funding from the Saudi government, particularly of Australian universities.66 There is little to suggest, however, that funding from abroad has increased in the past decade. The Australian government, too, has actively funded Islamic studies in Australian universities—most directly through the establishment of a National Centre of Excellence in Islamic Studies across three universities in three states at a cost of AU$8 million ($6 million U.S.).67 The center was conceived as part of the government’s social cohesion, harmony, and security strategy, and aimed to teach Islam in an Australian context.68According to the University of Melbourne website, all three universities involved in the National Centre of Excellence for Islamic Studies – the University of Melbourne, Griffith University, and the University of Western Sydney - “have gone on to establish their own independent Islamic studies programs” since 2011.69

 

Islamism and the State: 

The suite of anti-terrorism laws introduced since 9/11 have created new terrorism-related offenses under Australian law and greatly expanded the powers of police and intelligence agencies in the country.70 These laws have been controversial for their impact on civil liberties, as has the legislative process that produced them.71 What’s more, sometimes the use of these powers has been deemed improper.72

 

In September 2014, the threat level of terrorism in Australia was raised from “medium” to “high” for the first time since 2002. The threat level assessment was based on a four-tier system with “extreme” being the highest possible level. The threat level remained at “high” until September 2015. In November 2015, the threat level assessment system changed from a four-tier to a five-tier (“Not Expected,” “Possible,” “Probable,” “Expected,” and “Certain”) one in response to the “changing domestic and international security landscape” and the new threat level was deemed “probable.”73 Due to the perceived spike in militant jihad activity within the neighboring Southeast Asian region, Australia also added Islamic State East Asia to its list of terrorist organizations in September 2017, imposing a 25-year jail sentence for supporting the organization in any way.74

 

The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) amended legislation to deny parole and bail to anyone found guilty of supporting or being linked to terrorist activity.75

 

The Federal Government has adopted measures to give the Defense Force powers to assist state and federal police with terrorism, though police would continue to be the primary respondents.76 Moreover, in a bid to reduce the number of illicit firearms and thus combat terrorism, Australia introduced gun amnesty for the first time in two decades:77 In January 2017, the Turnbull administration considered uniting the AFP, ASIO, and Australian Border Force in a security and terrorism portfolio,78 However, this proposal was rejected.

 

At the state level, in October 2017, the Victoria government announced a new police unit and threat assessment center.79 Though not specifically aimed at Islamic or religiously motivated attacks, the center and its agents will monitor and manage individuals at risk of radicalization or those who pose threats.80 This initiative came two years after the Victorian state government announced the creation in 2015 of an AU$D25 million taskforce over four years to eradicate youth radicalization.81 The center’s establishment is based on similar precedents in other Australian states, such as Queensland and New South Wales.82 Authorities built the center to monitor up to 300 people annually, and to refer at-risk people to mental health services or charge them as necessary.83 Six months after its opening in March 2018, Victoria’s Fixated Threat Assessment Center (FTAC) had deradicalized 90 people showing early signs of violent extremism. From its opening until May 2019, FTAC processed 231 referrals, falling short of the initial target. As of July 2019, Victorian law enforcement authorities were optimistic about reaching the 300-people target in the near future.84

 

In 2019, the Christchurch mosque shootings in New Zealand spurred Australia and other G20 countries to examine the role tech and social media companies play in enabling extremism. The result, according to a Reuters report on August 25, 2019, was new legislation giving law enforcement authorities to “block access to internet domains hosting terrorist material during crisis events.”85

 

The Federal Government has taken steps to block broadcasts of terrorist attacks via the internet. In the aftermath of the livestreamed New Zealand Christchurch attacks in 2019, Australian authorities passed and enacted legislation that requires social media companies to (1) notify the Australian Federal Police if they discover livestreamed terrorist attacks on their platforms, and (2) remove such broadcasts, subject to stringent sanctions up to and including a $840,000 fine. In October 2019, a gunman killed two people in a synagogue in Halle, Germany while livestreaming the attack on Twitch, an online video streaming platform. Twitch removed the broadcast 30 minutes after it ended and notified Australian authorities. Australian e-Safety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant reacted, “So far, the protocols taken by social media companies to thwart the spread of this material appear to be working effectively.”86

 

Citations: 

[1] Karen Kissane, “Tip Off Led To Intense 16-Month Investigation,” The Age (Melbourne), September 17, 2008, http://www.theage.com.au/national/tipoff-led-to-intense-16month-investigation-20080916-4hxp.html?page=-1.

 

[2] Mitchell D. Silber and Arvin Bhatt, Radicalization In The West: The Homegrown Threat (New York: New York City Police Department, 2007), 27-28. https://seths.blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/09/NYPD_Report-Radicalization_in_the_West.pdf.

 

[3] “Benbrika Guilty Of Terrorism Charges,” ABC Radio The World Today, September 15, 2008, http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2008/s2364860.htm.

 

[4] Mex Cooper, “Benbrika Jailed For 15 years,” The Age (Melbourne), February 3, 2009, http://www.theage.com.au/national/benbrika-jailed-for-15-years-20090203-7w7y.html.

 

[5] Larissa Cummings, “Five Guilty Of ‘Mass’ Terror Plot In Sydney,” Daily Telegraph (Surry Hills), October 16, 2006, http://www.news.com.au/national/five-guilty-of-mass-terror-plot-in-sydney/story-e6frfkvr-1225787524969.

 

[6] “Long Sentences for Sydney Terror Plotters,” ABC Radio PM, February 15, 2010, http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2010/s2820249.htm.

 

[7] “Terror Suspect ‘Met Osama,’” Sydney Morning Herald, December 20, 2005, http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2005/12/20/1135032012529.html.

 

[8] Silber and Bhatt, Radicalization In The West: The Homegrown Threat, 51.

 

[9] “Long Sentences for Sydney Terror Plotters.”

 

[10] Paul Maley, “Terrorist Leader to Remain Behind Bars,” The Australian, November 3, 2017, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/national-security/terrorist-leader-benbrika-to-remain-behind-bars/news-story/adb054f30203bc922b6b8600acf5814c.

 

[11] James Dowling and Mark Buttler, “Terror plotters on hold,” Herald Sun (Australia), September 16, 2019, https://www.pressreader.com/australia/herald-sun/20190916/281556587529683.

 

[12] “Army Base Terror Plot Foiled,” The Australian, August 4, 2009, 1; Milanda Rout, “Terror Suspect Saney Aweys Says He’s ‘Victimised’ In Prison,” The Australian, November 7, 2009, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/terror-suspect-saney-aweys-says-hes-victimised-in-prison/story-e6frg6nf-1225795202644.

 

[13] Cameron Stewart, “Phone Call Sparked Operation Neath,” The Australian, August 4, 2009, 1, 4; Stewart, “Phone Call Sparked Operation Neath”; Spencer S. Hsu, “U.S. Says Men Ran Terror Network,” Washington Post, November 24, 2009, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/23/AR2009112303999.html.

 

[14] “Army Base Terror Plot Foiled.”

 

[15] Stewart, “Phone Call Sparked Operation Neath.”

 

[16] Andrew Zammit, “Islamic State Spurs Increased Jihadist Activity in Australia,” Jamestown Foundation Terrorism Monitor, February 20, 2015, https://jamestown.org/program/islamic-state-spurs-increased-jihadist-activity-in-australia/.

 

[17] Ibid.

 

[18] Karl Hoerr, “Sydney Man Spoke to Islamic State About Attack in Australia,” ABC News, April 24, 2017, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-24/sydney-man-spoke-to-islamic-state-about-attack-in-australia/8468346; Rachel Olding, “Sydney Man Omarjan Azari Spoke of Plan to Kill Seven Random Australians a Month, Trial Told,” Sydney Morning Herald, April 24, 2017, http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/sydney-man-omarjan-azari-spoke-of-plan-to-kill-seven-random-australians-a-month-terrorism-trial-told-20170424-gvrbpk.html.

 

[19] “Your Nation,” The Australian, April 11, 2017.

 

[20] Lily Mayers, “Omarjan Azari sentenced to 18 years' jail over plan to behead Australians,” ABC News, March 29, 2019, https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-03-29/omarjan-azari-sentenced-to-18-years-jail-for-beheading-plot/10954632.

 

[21] Australia Federal Police and Victoria Police, “Media Release: Additional man charged as a result of Operation Middleham,” Australian Federal Police, May 27, 2016, https://www.afp.gov.au/news-media/media-releases/media-release-additional-man-charged-result-operation-middleham.

 

[22] Angus Thompson, “IS recruiter charged over Sydney terror plot,” The Sydney Morning Herald, November 12, 2019, https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/is-recruiter-charged-over-sydney-terror-plot-20191112-p539tp.html.

 

[23] Jonathan Pearlman, “ISIS Behind Australian Men’s Foiled Etihad Bomb Plot,” Straits Times, August 4, 2017, http://www.straitstimes.com/asia/australianz/australia-plane-plot-directed-by-senior-isis-commander-targeted-etihad-flight-from.

 

[24] Ben Doherty, “Sydney Terrorism Raids: Man Charged with Possessing Prohibited Weapon,” Guardian (London), August 6, 2017, https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/aug/06/sydney-terrorism-raids-man-charged-with-possessing-prohibited-weapon.

 

[25] Doherty, “Sydney Terrorism Raids”; “Australian brothers guilty of IS plane bomb plot,” BBC, September 20, 2019, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-49764450.

 

[26] Paul Maley, “From Syria to Sydney: How the Airport Terror Plot Unfolded,” The Australian, August 5, 2017, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/national-security/from-syria-to-sydney-how-the-airport-terror-plot-unfolded/news-story/463e4d7d74c27764c07c93df85bdd86c.

 

[27] Richard Barrett, Beyond The Caliphate: Foreign Fighters and the Threat of Returnees, The Soufan Group, October 2017, https://thesoufancenter.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Beyond-the-Caliphate-Foreign-Fighters-and-the-Threat-of-Returnees-TSC-Report-October-2017-v3.pdf

 

[28] Myles Morgan, “’Less than 0.1 Per Cent of Australian Muslims are a Security Interest,’” SBS News, October 24, 2017, http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2017/10/24/less-01-cent-australian-muslims-are-security-interest.

 

[29] Nick Sas and Lara Hyams, “Isaak el Matari had plans to create Islamic State base near Sydney, court hears,” ABC News, July 4, 2019, https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-07-04/el-matari-had-plans-to-create-is-base-near-sydney-court-hears/11277212.

 

[30] Livia Albeck-Ripka, “Australia Is Bringing Children of ISIS Home. Is It Ready?” New York Times, June 28, 2019, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/28/world/australia/isis-children.html.

 

[31] Eric Tlozek and Fouad Abu Gosh, “Islamic State never needed a caliphate to keep menacing the world. Now it’s regrouping,” ABC News, July 11, 2020, https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-07-11/islamic-state-is-back-and-the-west-is-partly-to-blame/12429296.

 

[32] Olivia Lambert, “Radical Islamic State preacher Musa Cerantonio breaks silence,” news.com.au, January 12 2016, http://www.news.com.au/national/victoria/news/radical-islamic-state-preacher-musa-cerantonio-breaks-silence/news-story/f8730bddd0267a230394f2d00e08fc39.

 

[33] Lim Yan Liang, “Singaporean Zulfikar Mohamad Shariff, 44, detained under ISA for promoting violence and ISIS, radicalising others,” Strait Times, July 29, 2016, http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/44-year-old-singaporean-detained-under-isa-for-promoting-violence-and-isis-radicalising.

 

[34] Graeme Wood, “What ISIS Really Wants,” The Atlantic, l March 2015, https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2015/03/what-isis-really-wants/384980/.

 

[35] Dan Oakes and Sam Clark, “Islamic preacher Musa Cerantonio among five arrested over alleged plan to join Islamic State,” ABC News, May 11, 2016, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-05-11/preacher-among-five-arrested-over-alleged-plan-to-join-is/7403344.

 

[36] Michael Safi and Josh Robertson, “Musa Cerantonio among men arrested after allegedly trying to sail to Indonesia,” Guardian (London), May 11, 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/may/11/musa-cerantonio-among-men-arrested-after-allegedly-trying-to-sail-to-indonesia.

 

[37] Dan Oakes, “Melbourne shooting: What we know about Abdul Numan Haider, shot dead after stabbing anti-terrorism officers at Endeavour Hills,” ABC News, September 25, 2014, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-09-24/what-we-know-about-abdul-numan-haider/5767044.

 

[38] Jessica Longbottom, “Numan Haider's phone used to access 'disgusting' IS videos, Tony Abbott's schedule, inquest told,” ABC News, March 22, 2016, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-03-21/numan-haider-thought-it-was-ok-to-behead-people-inquest-told/7263210.

 

[39] Melissa Davey, “Rapid radicalisation: the case of Numan Haider shocks family and experts alike,” Guardian (London), March 24, 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/mar/25/rapid-radicalisation-the-case-of-numan-haider-shocks-family-and-experts-alike.

 

[40] Louisa Rebgetz, “Alleged terror financier Omar Succarieh denied bail for third time,” ABC News, February 15, 2016, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-15/omar-succarieh-denied-bail-for-third-time/7169700.

 

[41] Thomas Duff, “Islamic bookshop owner - and brother of Australia's first suicide bomber - who was caught up in terrorism raids walks FREE from prison,” Daily Mail (London), May 15, 2020, https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8325513/Brother-Australias-suicide-bomber-caught-terror-raids-released.html.

 

[42] Kristian Silva, “Brisbane suicide bomber's brother also fighting in Syria: police,” Brisbane Times, September 20, 2014, http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/brisbane-suicide-bombers-brother-also-fighting-in-syria-police-20140919-10jjog.html.

 

[43] Australian Associated Press, “Anzac Day terrorism plot: Sevdet Besim ‘wanted to emulate Numan Haider,’” Guardian (London), August 1, 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/aug/01/anzac-day-terrorism-plot-sevdet-besim-wanted-to-emulate-numan-haider.

 

[44] Ibid.

 

[45] “Australia Terror Suspect: Man Held Over Suspected Missile Plan,” BBC News, February 28, 2017, http://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-39112260.

 

[46] “Young terror raid: Haisem Zahab arrest believed linked to Kuwaiti rocket, cash plot,” Daily Telegraph (London), February 28, 2017, https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/young-terror-raids-haisem-zah....

 

[47] James Oaten, “Bangladeshi student Momena Shoma sentenced to 42 years for terror attack on homestay landlord,” ABC News, June 5, 2019, https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-06-05/bangladeshi-homestay-guest-senten....

 

[48] Margaret Scheikowski, “‘He’s not sorry for what he did’: student jailed for stabbing terror attack,” Sydney Morning Herald, June 5, 2019, https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/he-s-not-sorry-for-what-he-did-student-jailed-for-stabbing-terror-attack-20190605-p51ur5.html.

 

[49] “Queanbeyan Stabbing: Counter-terrorism Police Investigate Fatal Rampage,” ABC News, April 8, 2017, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-07/counter-terrorism-police-join-investigation-into-fatal-stabbing/8425580.

 

[50] “Moderate Cleric Claims Benbrika Described Australia As A Land of War,” ABC Radio PM, August 2, 2006, http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2006/s1704344.htm.

 

[51] Michael Safi, “Closure of al-Furqan puts spotlight on role of Islamic bookshops in extremism,” Guardian (London), April 23, 2015, https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2015/apr/23/closure-of-al-furqan-puts-spotlight-on-role-of-islamic-bookshops-in-extremism.

 

[52] James Dowling, “Revealed: The split that created Al-Furqan,” Herald Sun, May 16, 2015, http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/revealed-the-split-that-created-alfurqan/news-story/516eb4edada14b35d5beeb6949775299.

 

[53] “Al-Furqan: The names linked to a shuttered Islamic Centre in Melbourne,” ABC News, March 7, 2016, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-03-02/al-furqan-islamic-centre-melbourne-names-linked/7214472.

 

[54] Ibid.

 

[55] “Melbourne's Al-Furqan Islamic Centre, attended by several terrorism accused, closes its doors,” ABC News, April 23, 2015, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-04-23/melbournes-al-furqan-islamic-centre-closes-effective-immediately/6414316.

 

[56] Tom Minear and James Dowling, “Islamic State-linked group Al-Furqan still meeting at suburban sports centre after shutting book shop,” Herald Sun, May 2, 2015, http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/law-order/islamic-statelinked-group-alfurqan-still-meeting-at-suburban-sports-centre-after-shutting-book-shop/news-story/edfee9bd3d3eb2ee6314a135d4f19424.

 

[57] Charles Miranda, “Controversial Melbourne preacher Harun Mehicevic was ‘asked to spy on ISIS’, say parents,” news.com.au, May 13, 2016, http://www.news.com.au/national/controversial-melbourne-preacher-harun-mehicevic-was-asked-to-spy-on-isis-say-parents/news-story/4f93963291fdbf739ca5363fc3a4924f.

 

[58] See, for example, Daniel Stacey, “Australia Struggles Over Role of Hizb ut-Tahrir Islamic Group,” Wall Street Journal, November 17, 2014, https://www.wsj.com/articles/australia-struggles-over-role-of-hizb-ut-tahrir-islamic-group-1416280803.

 

[59] Hosseini & Chafic, “Mapping the Socio-Cultural Contexts,” 39.

 

[60] “FAQs about Hizb ut-Tahrir,” Hizb ut-Tahrir Australia, n.d., http://www.hizb-australia.org/2016/02/faqs-hizb-ut-tahrir/.

 

[61] “Press Release,” Hizb ut-Tahrir Australia, n.d., http://www.hizb-australia.org/media/press-releases/.

 

[62] Barney Zwartz, “Working On The Margins,” The Age (Melbourne), January 13, 2007, http://www.theage.com.au/news/in-depth/working-on-the-margins/2007/01/12/1168105181403.html.

 

[63] Ghena Krayem and Farrah Ahmed, Islamic community processes in Australia: An introduction (Carlton: Melbourne University Publishing, 2014), http://www.ausmuslimfamlawproject.com/site/user-assets/docs/Krayem%20and%20Ahmed%20book%20chapter%2020-4-201520161130142442.pdf

 

[64] Sally Neighbour, “Extremists With Caliphate On Their Minds, Not Bombs In Their Belts,” The Australian, July 2, 2010, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/extremists-with-caliphate-on-their-minds-not-bombs-in-their-belts/story-e6frg6ux-1225887074605.

 

[65] Richard Kerbaj and Stuart Rintoul, “Saudis’ Secret Agenda,” The Australian, May 3, 2008, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/saudis-secret-agenda/story-e6frg6z6-1111116230270.

 

[66] “Saudi Money; Australian Universities and Islam – where is the line in the sand?” ABC Radio National The Religion Report, April 30, 2008, http://www.abc.net.au/rn/religionreport/stories/2008/2231183.htm.

 

[67] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, “International Religious Freedom Report 2007: Australia,” October 19, 2007, https://www.justice.gov/sites/default/files/pages/attachments/2015/10/01/dos-irf_2007_australia.pdf.

 

[68] Minister for Education Science and Training, “$8m For Centre Of Excellence For Islamic Education National Action Plan,” July 16, 2006.

 

[69] See University of Melbourne, National Centre for Contemporary Islamic Studies, "About," n.d., https://arts.unimelb.edu.au/national-centre-for-contemporary-islamic-studies/about#:~:text=The%20National%20Centre%20for%20Contemporary%20Islamic%20Studies%20was%20originally%20established,of%20Western%20Sydney%20(NSW).; Griffith University, "National Centre of Excellence for Islamic Studies Honours Scholarship," n.d., https://www.griffith.edu.au/scholarships/scholarship-listings/national-centre-of-excellence-for-islamic-studies-honours-scholarship; University of Western Sydney, Centre for the Study of Contemporary Muslim Societies, "Launch of the New Centre for the Study of Contemporary Muslim Societies," June 23, 2009, https://culturematters.wordpress.com/2009/06/23/new-centre-for-study-of-muslim-societies/.

 

[70] See, for example, the Security Legislation Amendment (Terrorism) Act 2002 (Cth), the Australian Security and Intelligence Organisation Legislation Amendment (Terrorism) Act 2003 (Cth) and the National Security Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 1) 2014.

 

[71] See, for example, Andrew Lynch, “Legislating With Urgency—The Enactment Of The Anti-Terrorism Act [No 1] 2005,” MULR 30, iss. 3 (2007), 747-781.

 

[72] See, for example, the legal judgments in R v Ul-Haque, NSWSC 1251 (2007); R v Mallah, NSWSC 358 (2005); R v Thomas, VSCA 165 (2006).

 

[73] Clare Murphy, “Changing Australia’s national terrorist threat advisory system,” Australian Strategic Policy Institute, July 24, 2015, https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/changing-australias-national-terrorist-threat-advisory-system/.

 

[74] Mr Andrew Hastie MP, “1. Review of the listing,” Parliament of Australia, September 14, 2017, https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Joint/Intelligence_and_Security/ISEastAsia/Report/section?id=committees%2freportjnt%2f024119%2f25302.

 

[75] Prime Minister of Australia, “Press Conference Opening Remarks— COAG Leaders’ Meeting,” Prime Minister of Australia, June 9, 2017, https://www.pm.gov.au/media/2017-06-09/press-conference-opening-remarks-coag-leaders-meeting.

 

[76] Louise Yaxley, “Terrorism: Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull Gives Defence Force Power to Help Police During Attacks,” ABC News, July 17, 2017, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-07-17/australian-defence-force-given-call-out-powers-terrorism/8715878.

 

[77] Karen Gilchrist, “Australia Reintroduces National Gun Amnesty Reintroduced to Combat Terrorism,” CNBC, June 16, 2017, https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/16/australia-national-gun-amnesty-reintroduced-to-combat-terrorism.html.

 

[78] Luke Henriques Gomes, “PM Considers New Security, Terrorism Portfolio,” The New Daily, January 11, 2017,  http://thenewdaily.com.au/news/2017/01/11/new-terrorism-security-portfolio/.

 

[79] “New Unit to Prevent Radicalisation, Lone Wolf Attacks Set Up in Victoria,” ABC News, October 4, 2017, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-04/new-unit-to-prevent-lone-wolf-attacks-in-victoria-set-up/9013942; David Hurley, “Clinicians to Team Up with Victoria Police Detectives in Counter Terror Unit,” Herald Sun, October 4, 2017, http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/law-order/clinicians-to-team-up-with-victoria-police-detectives-in-counter-terror-unit/news-story/9593d25807332a923ceacb56b2cf3102.

 

[80] “New Unit to Prevent Radicalisation, Lone Wolf Attacks Set Up in Victoria.”

 

[81] “Victorian Government to Set Up $25 Million Taskforce to Fight Radicalisation of Young People,” ABC News, May 3, 2015, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-05-03/25m-taskforce-to-fight-radicalisation-of-young-victorians/6440618.

 

[82] “New Unit to Prevent Radicalization, Lone Wolf Attacks Set Up in Victoria”; Minister for Police and Emergency Services, “New Threat Assessment Centre To Keep Victorians Safe,” Media Release, October 4, 2017, https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/new-threat-assessment-centre-to-keep-victorians-safe/.

 

[83] “New Unit to Prevent Radicalisation, Lone Wolf Attacks Set Up in Victoria.”

 

[84] “Questions taken on notice and further information agreed to be supplied at the hearings,” Police and Emergency Services, July 5, 2019, https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/images/stories/committees/paec/2019-20_Budget_Estimates/Quons/2019-07-05_Police_and_Emergency_Services_hearings.pdf.

 

[85] Alison Bevege, “Australia to block internet domains hosting extremist content during terror attacks,” Reuters, August 25, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-australia-security-internet/australia-to-block-internet-domains-hosting-extremist-content-during-terror-attacks-idUSKCN1VF05G.

 

[86] Max Kosloski, “Social media companies thwarted spread of latest terror livestream,” Sydney Morning Herald, October 10, 2019, https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/social-media-companies-thwarted-spread-of-latest-terror-livestream-20191010-p52zhk.html.