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 Keeping Australia safe

The Australian Government has introduced an extensive legislative regime around counter-terrorism, national security and other cross-jurisdictional offences. The key pieces of Australia's national security legislation and relevant international laws can be found on the Australian National Security website.

This legislation ensures that Australia is better placed to prevent potential acts of terrorism in Australia.

Public safety

Australia's counter-terrorism legislation allows for specific arrangements to protect the Australian public from a terrorist threat. These measures include control orders and preventative detention orders.

More information on these arrangements can be found on the Counter terrorism laws page.

More information on government support for victims of overseas terrorist attacks can be found on the Victims of terrorism page.

Council of Australian Governments review of counter-terrorism laws

The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) review of counter-terrorism laws commenced in August 2012 and was completed on 1 March 2013. The Review Committee consisted of six members chosen by the heads of government and was chaired by the Hon Anthony Whealy QC, a recently retired New South Wales Court of Appeal Judge. The Review Committee made forty-seven recommendations relating to the Commonwealth and state and territory counter-terrorism laws that were enacted after the 2005 London bombings.

COAG has referred the development of a response to the Report to the Australian and New Zealand Counter-Terrorism Committee (ANZCTC). This is in line with the ANZCTC's role in providing expert strategic and policy advice to heads of Government by reviewing, monitoring and advising on the adequacy of Australia's counter-terrorism legislation.

More information on the COAG review of counter-terrorism laws can be found at the COAG website.

Sedition laws

Australia's constitutional democracy means that people are entitled to their views as long as they operate within our legal framework. However, spreading material or information that undermines Australia's cohesive society, including ideologies that encourage violence and racism, is unacceptable.

A strong framework is in place for the prevention of hate speech and incitement to violence. Under the Criminal Code Act 1995, it is an offence to urge violence against groups or members of groups, intending that force or violence will occur as a result of the urging. Penalties of imprisonment apply in relation to these offences.

More information on sedition laws can be found at the Attorney-General's Department website.

What can I do?

All Australians can help to keep us safe from the threat of terrorism.

For more information refer to the Australian National Security website.

If you have any information that you would like to report to the National Security Hotline, call 1800 1234 00.