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Release of ASIO Annual Report



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ATTORNEY-GENERAL HON ROBERT McCLELLAND MP

MEDIA RELEASE

Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600  Telephone (02) 6277 7300  Fax (02) 6273 4102 www.attorneygeneral.gov.au

21 October 2010

RELEASE OF ASIO ANNUAL REPORT

Attorney -General, Robert McClelland, today welcomed the tabling of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation’s (ASIO) Report to Parliament 2009 -10.

The report is significant as ASIO is the only mem ber of the Australian Intelligence Community to provide a publicly available document on its activities and operations.

“The report highlights the importance of ASIO’s role in protecting Australia’s national security interests from a range of threats incl uding terrorism and espionage,” Mr McClelland said.

Events over the past year, including two failed attempted attacks in the United States, highlight the ongoing threat from terrorism. Since September 11 2001, more than 100 Australians have died in terror ist attacks overseas. In Australia, at least four mass casualty attacks have been prevented only through the committed and professional efforts of ASIO and it s partners in inte lligence and law enforcement.

“In an increasingly demanding domestic security e nvironment, ASIO’s analytical, investigative and operational activit ies remained intense. Beyond our shores, ASIO also identified individuals and groups participating in and providing support for terrorism -related activit ies .”

In 2009 -10, ASIO published o ver 3,200 reports and assessments and completed over 38,000 visa Security Assessments, 9 8,000 counter -terrorism checks and 2 2,000 personnel Security Assessments. ASIO was also involved in over 40 litigation matters including supporting ongoing terrorism pr osecutions in Melbourne.

“ASIO’s counter -terrorism effort als o contributed to the Government’s understanding of the drivers of radicalisation to assist in the development of policies to reduce the risk of individuals in our community turning to violent e xtremism. ASIO is also working closely with partner agencies and the private sector to counter cyber security threats from both state and non -state actors. ”

The Organisation has also broadened its engagement beyond government, building links with business , industry and academia through the ASIO Business Liaison Unit .

The report also demonstrates th at ASIO is working more closely than ever with its national security partners. The establishment of the Counter Terrorism Control Centre (CTCC) harnesses the fu ll capabilities of Australia’s counter -terrorism agencies. A pilot National Interception Technical Assistance Centre will also be establish ed within ASIO to provide a central resource from which intelligence and law enforcement agencies can receive technic al assistance.

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“Th ese developments recogni se that responses to national security are most effective when they draw on the full range of capabilities wit hin Australia’s security, intelligence and law -enforcement community. ”

ASIO’s unclassified Report to Parliament 2009 -10 is available at www.asio.gov.au .

Media Contact : Daniel Gleeson 0417 886 111