On 16-19 July 2018, the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED), acting on behalf of the Counter-Terrorism Committee, undertook a visit to Australia. Following the Committee’s initial assessment of July 2009, this was a focused visit concentrating on Australia’s implementation of Security Council resolutions 1373 (2001), 1624 (2005), 2178 (2014), 2396 (2017), and other relevant Council resolutions. In accordance with the practice followed for the Committee’s previous assessment visits, the human rights aspects of Australia’s counter-terrorism measures and the role of women in countering terrorism and violent extremism in accordance with Security Council resolutions 2242 (2015) and 2395 (2017) were also raised during the discussions.
The delegation held meetings with the Government of Australia in Canberra, then travelled to Melbourne and Sydney to meet with representatives of the States of Victoria and New South Wales to discuss their unique approaches and advancements to countering terrorism and violent extremism. Under the auspices of Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), representatives from a wide variety of national ministries and agencies, as well as State-level authorities, and representatives of civil society and academia, took part in the four days of discussions.
Australia has demonstrated a strong commitment to the enactment of a national framework on counter-terrorism and countering violent extremism (CVE). The delegation noted the various measures taken by Australia to address terrorism threats related to the movement of terrorist actors and foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs), varying from enhanced border controls involving the use of cutting-edge technologies, through the creation and deployment in major cities of joint operational teams, to legislative enhancements to facilitate the prosecution of terrorists and returning FTFs. The delegation also noted Australia’s awareness-raising measures to prevent radicalization in prison and counter violent extremism, and commended Australia on a number of effective mechanisms aimed at ensuring inter-agency coordination and information sharing across Commonwealth and State-level agencies.
The delegation included CTED experts, as well as representatives of INTERPOL, ICAO, and UN Women.