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Turnbull toughens stand on terror, to give ADF greater powers

ANI  |  Canberra [Australia] 

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has toughened stand on and announced giving greater power to the Australian Defence Force (ADF) to respond to domestic terrorist incidents.

According to The Guardian, changes unveiled by the Turnbull will make it easier for ADF personnel to work with federal and state governments and their police forces in the event of a domestic terrorist attack.

The changes come after his initiated a review of the ADF's support to national counter-arrangements in 2016, following a spate of terrorist attacks around the

Turnbull had been hinting for months of plans to strengthen Australia's counter-regime following the coronial report into the Lindt cafe siege.

"State and territory police forces remain the best first response to terrorist incidents, immediately after an attack starts," The Guarding quoted Turnbull as saying in a joint statement with the defence minister, Marise Payne.

"[But] defence must be able to contribute effectively to domestic counter-terrorism efforts, in addition to its offshore counter-terrorism missions and regional capacity-building activities."

Turnbull said the law must be changed that requires state and territory governments to exhaust their capacity to respond to domestic terror events before they can ask for military help, reports The Guardian.

He said the changes would make it easier for ADF personnel to prevent suspected terrorists "from leaving the scene of an incident".

He also wants ADF personnel to be placed within law enforcement agencies to assist with liaison and engagement between the ADF and police, and for defence to provide specialised training from special forces for select law enforcement teams.

The ADF will offer state and territory governments specialised training from special forces for select law enforcement teams.

The ADF will offer states and territories placement of officers within law enforcement agencies to assist with liaison and engagement. It is hoped this will assist with pre-positioning of the ADF in response to a possible terrorist incident.

The will strengthen part IIIAAA of the Defence Act to remove constraints in the provisions to "call out" the ADF to assist states and territories.

The changes will include the removal of the provision that currently limits states and territories from asking for ADF support and specialist military skills until their capability or capacity has been exceeded.

The government will also make changes to the act to make it easier for the ADF to support the police response, such as the ability to prevent suspected terrorists from leaving the scene of an incident.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, July 17 2017. 05:02 IST