Thursday, 2 Dec 2021 - 28 of Kislev, 5782

Australia will list all of Hezbollah as a terrorist organization

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In a statement, Australian Interior Minister Karen Andrews said Hezbollah continues to threaten terrorist attacks and provides support to terrorist organisations such as Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hamas’ Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades.

“The government has zero tolerance for violence, and there is no cause, religious or ideological, that can justify killing innocent people,” he added.

The Australian government announced that it will list Hezbollah, the Lebanese shiite group,  in its entirety as a terrorist organisation in the country.

Unlike several other countries including the US, UK and New Zealand, Australia currently only lists the group’s External Security Organisation (ESO), not its military or political wings.

In a statement, Australian Interior Minister Karen Andrews said Hezbollah continues to threaten terrorist attacks and provides support to terrorist organisations such as Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hamas’ Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades.

“The government has zero tolerance for violence, and there is no cause, religious or ideological, that can justify killing innocent people,” he added.

“The Morrison government is committed to ensuring Australia has the right tools and legislation in place to combat the enduring threat of terrorism. As recent events in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and elsewhere around the world have demonstrated, we cannot be complacent,’’ the minister said.

He underlined that Australia ‘’is a nation of rich cultural backgrounds. Our community is built on a broad fabric of many and varied experiences and cultures, and our nation’s character is better off for it. The views of violent extremist groups such as these are a stain on that rich cultural fabric. There is no place in Australia for their hateful ideologies.”

The listings will enable the application of terrorist organisation offences to these groups, and align Australia with international partners such as the United Kingdom and Canada.

The Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ) co-CEO Peter Wertheim welcomed the government announcement. “The ECAJ and other Jewish organisations have been advocating this for many years. The fiction that Hezbollah’s terrorism can be separated from its other activities has been decisively punctured. This will deliver a hammer blow to Hezbollah’s pretensions to credibility and legitimacy,” he told the Australian Jewish News.

Zionist Federation of Australia president Jeremy Leibler commented, “Hezbollah has targeted Jewish communities the world over. I thank the Minister, and also the bipartisan Intelligence and Security Committee, which unanimously recommended this outcome.”

In a statement, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said: “I thank the Australian government and my friend, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, for the intent to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organization.Hezbollah is an Iranian-backed terror organization in Lebanon responsible for countless attacks in Israel & around the world.Together, we will continue in our fight against terror.”

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