Council of Australian Governments review of counter-terrorism legislation

Law Policy Local government Human rights Crime National security Australia
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This report evaluates the operation, effectiveness and implications of key Commonwealth, state and territory counter-terrorism laws.

At a Special Meeting on counterterrorism on 27 September 2005, Council of Australian Governments (COAG) reached  agreement that “it was appropriate for newly introduced counterterrorism laws to be formally reviewed after a period of five years.” Subsequently, at a COAG meeting on 10 February 2006, agreement was reached on the details of the scope, form and process of the proposed review of counterterrorism legislation, which was, at that time, scheduled to commence in 2010.

The purpose and scope of the Review were stated as follows:

  • “In broad terms, the Committee should review and evaluate the operation, effectiveness and implications of the relevant amendments in each jurisdiction. In conducting the review, the Committee should take into account the agreement of COAG leaders at the Special Meeting on Counter-Terrorism on 27 September 2005, that any strengthened counter-terrorism laws must be necessary, effective against terrorism and contain appropriate safeguards against abuse, such as Parliamentary and judicial review, and be exercised in a way that is evidence-based, intelligence-led and proportionate”.

The Review Committee was expressly required to take into account the outcome of reviews or monitoring activities conducted in accordance with individual State and Territory legislation. In conducting the Review, the Committee was required to provide for public submissions and public hearings. The Committee was required to provide a written report to COAG within six months of commencing the Review.

This is the Review Committee's final report on Australia's counter-terrorism legislation.

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