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Peter Dutton. Minister for Home Affairs of Australia, previously Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Dutton’s citizenship laws could cause terrorism risks, says ASIO

The Australian Security and Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) has warned that the legal provisions in place that automatically strip dual nationals of their citizenship if they engage in terrorist-like conduct could prove dangerous.

Indeed, ASIO has argued that while the laws make it difficult for terrorists to physically execute an attack against Australia, it doesn’t preclude those offshore from conspiring against Australia. The intelligence organisation argued that leaving suspects outside of Australia doesn’t necessarily prevent terrorists from using technology to orchestrate onshore activities that could undermine sovereign security.

Furthermore, ASIO has suggested that monitoring overseas suspects could prove more challenging, maintaining that it would be better to retain supreme visibility over those that could pose a risk. While it did concede that the citizenship laws, orchestrated by the former Home Affairs Minister, were effective in removing those with links to terrorism, it does not necessarily nullify the existing threat.

Herein, ASIO has called for the government’s security model to be modified, suggesting that a more thorough and in-depth process should be implemented case by case. Ceasing a person’s Australian citizenship won’t always minimise or eradicate the threat against Australia.

The laws passed in 2015 are currently being reviewed by a joint parliamentary committee. They will report back to the Government on December 1, 2019.