Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Disclaimer: The Parliamentary Library does not warrant or accept liability for the accuracy or usefulness of the transcripts. These are copied directly from the broadcaster's website.
Anti-terrorism report called into doubt. -

View in ParlViewView other Segments

Leading terrorism experts are questioning whether the counter-terrorism white paper actually
targets home-grown terrorism.


LEIGH SALES, PRESENTER: The Prime Minister says Australia now faces an increased terrorist threat
from people born or raised in Australia.

But leading terrorism experts are questioning whether the white paper does enough to target
home-grown terrorism.

Steve Cannane reports.

STEVE CANNANE, REPORTER: Home-grown terrorism has been responsible for major attacks in London,
Madrid and Bali.

So far, similar attacks have not occurred in Australia.

But the Prime Minister says the conviction of 20 Australian citizens since 2001 for terrorism
offences is evidence of a rising threat.

KEVIN RUDD, PRIME MINISTER: Australia now faces an increased terrorist threat from people born or
raised in Australia who take inspiration from international jihadist narratives.

STEVE CANNANE: But the funding priorities in the counter-terrorism white paper don't reflect the
Prime Minister's emphasis on home-grown terrorism.

seems to be somewhat skewed toward border security, and if indeed as the white paper, in my view,
correctly identifies that the problem is one of growing home-grown terrorism, then one would have
expected to see some resources devoted to developing counter-radicalisation programs.

STEVE CANNANE: Those programs are already operating in Britain, according to a former
counter-terrorism chief from New Scotland Yard.

NICK O'BRIEN, CHARLES STURT UNIVERSITY: Quilliam in the UK is an organisation - I think it's funded
by the Government but it was set up about 18 months ago, and it's staffed by people who are former

One of the notable ones is a guy called Ed Husain, who's the author of a book called The Islamist,
and he and his colleagues are actually trying to get the Islamic community in the UK, the ones that
are radicalised to change to a more middle path.

STEVE CANNANE: Anthony Bergin would also like more resources to fight terrorism online.

ANTHONY BERGIN: This Government is committed of course to internet filtering, yet the white paper
does not look at all at the growing role of the internet - and I'm not just talking static
websites, but more social networking sites, chat rooms and so forth where extremists can meet.

These are places of indoctrination, of radicalisation. So I would've liked some resources to go
into developing a counter-narrative against extremism online.

STEVE CANNANE: But despite the emphasis on home-grown terrorism, the main funding initiative in the
white paper is $70 million for biometric testing of offshore visa applicants in 10 so-far-unnamed

KEVIN RUDD: People applying for new electronic visas in these countries will be required to present
in person at a visa application centre to lodge their visa applications and submit fingerprints and
facial images.

STEVE CANNANE: And the list of countries subject to biometric testing could be a diverse one.

NICK O'BRIEN: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Somalia and Yemen are the two recent ones been mentioned by
the Prime Minister today and I think he's exactly right to include those. And it'd be interesting
to see which the other countries are.

There are some commentators, certainly in the US, that believe the greatest threat to the US
actually emanates from the UK, and it'd be interesting to see whether the UK's on there. I guess,
if I had to put money on it, I would say no, because it would be a big political ask to put a
country like the UK on that list.

STEVE CANNANE: The Government is refusing to name the 10 countries that will have biometric

Steve Cannane, Lateline.