Prime Minister Tony Abbott today (17/12/14) announced that the Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and the NSW counterpart would conduct a review of the “Martin Place Siege”.
The media statement in full is below:
Martin Place siege – Joint Commonwealth – New South Wales review
17 December 2014
Premier of New South Wales
In the aftermath of the horrific Martin Place siege and following the tragic loss of innocent lives, we must learn what we can from this incident and implement any changes necessary at the State and Federal level.
The Commonwealth and New South Wales governments will urgently conduct a review into the Martin Place siege and what lessons can be learned from the events leading up to and surrounding the siege.
As our State and Commonwealth law enforcement and security agencies work together to keep Australia safe, the review will identify important lessons for the future.
The review will examine and make recommendations about a wide range of issues including the circumstances surrounding hostage-taker Man Haron Monis’ arrival in Australia and subsequent granting of asylum and citizenship; what information agencies had about him and how it was shared; and whether relevant national security legislative powers could have been better used.
The Terms of Reference for the review are attached.
As we work to learn what we can from these terrible events, we acknowledge once again the courage and professionalism shown by our law enforcement and security agencies and emergency services.
We are determined to ensure that nothing stands in the way of ensuring the people who put their lives on the line to keep Australia safe can get their job done.
We have asked the Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and the Secretary of the New South Wales Department of Premier and Cabinet to commence the review immediately, drawing on expertise from within our relevant jurisdictions and consulting as necessary with other States and Territories.
The review will report by the end of January 2015.
Martin Place Siege – Terms of Reference
On 17 December 2014 the Prime Minister and Premier of NSW established a review, for consideration by the Commonwealth and NSW Cabinets, of lessons learnt from the Martin Place Siege of 15-16 December 2014.
The aim of the review is to identify lessons for the future: what worked well and what might be improved.
The review will examine and make recommendations in respect of Commonwealth and NSW agencies and the cooperation between them, in relation to:
- the arrival of Man Haron Monis in Australia and subsequent grant of asylum, permanent residency and Australian citizenship;
- support received from, or any other interactions Man Haron Monis had with, government social support agencies;
- information held by Commonwealth and NSW agencies about Man Haron Monis for the period prior to and following his arrival in Australia up until the siege including how any information relevant to public safety was shared between, and used by, agencies;
- the interaction of Man Haron Monis with the NSW justice system;
- Man Haron Monis’ access to firearms;
- whether, how and at what stage relevant national security legislative powers including Control Orders were or could have been used in relation to Man Haron Monis’ activities of security concern;
- any lessons learnt by the NSW and Australian Federal Police about the handling of the siege;
- the effectiveness of public communication including coordination of messaging between the Commonwealth, NSW and jurisdictions; and
- the effectiveness of coordination more generally between the Commonwealth and NSW.
The review will take account of the parallel investigations into the incident including by the NSW State Coroner, and NSW Police and Australian Federal Police.
The review will prepare a report for consideration by the Commonwealth and NSW Cabinets by the end of January 2015.
17 December 2014 – End of Statement
One of the key parts of the review is “the interaction of Man Haron Monis with the NSW justice system”. In other words how was he out on bail given his extensive criminal background. Judges letting criminals out on bail was already in the media the in last few weeks and I wrote about it in the previous post. (Click here to read more) As I pointed out in that post Premier Baird and A-G Brad Hazzard are in cover-up mode and refusing to answer questions.
It is not the laws, it is the judges and until the government admit that then the problem will never be fixed
Normally these types of inquiries just sweep the matter under the carpet. This is not one of those times that the public would accept it. Already we have had the NSW Attorney-General Brad Hazzard trying to down play the situation and tell us new bail laws that come into effect in January will solve the problem. That will not stop dodgy judges and Mr Hazzard and Mr Baird know it.
Yesterday (16/12/14) we also had Nicholas Cowdery, the former NSW Director of Public Prosecutions, defending the judges who let Monis out on bail. Mr Cowdery said:
“NICHOLAS COWDERY: I think it’s a perfectly reasonable question. And the answer to it must be that when each of the judicial officers who were dealing with him were presented with the information that was available, the evidence on which they had to act, they applied themselves according to the law and made judgments about whether or not it was appropriate to release him on bail.”
“I think it would be very unfair now, with the benefit of hindsight, if there was criticism of judicial officers or indeed of police who dealt with him in the past. Because I think you can be assured that in a case like that, which involved very serious charges, the people involved would’ve been dealing with it absolutely properly and appropriately”
But later Mr Cowdery admitted knew every little about Monis and his offences and said “Well again, I don’t have the details of the offences, all I have are the bare figures.” (Click here to read more)
Cowdery knew bugger all and was in the media spinning dribble on behalf of the legal fraternity. If Cowdery was right then why bother with a review. Cowdery should shut his mouth and keep out of the way.
Regular readers of this website would know one of the victims is related to someone I have dealt with and have written about numerous times on this site and out of respect I will not say anything more than that. I only mention it as a number of readers have raised it with me.
I have walked past the Lindt Cafe (crime scene) 50 to 100 times as it is near the Queens Square Law Court Building which houses the NSW Supreme Court and Federal Court. I think the gravity of the situation hits home a bit more when you actually know the place where it is happening. I have never been inside and bought anything but I will make an effort next time I am in the area and show some support for the workers which I suggest everyone should.
It is all on Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s shoulders now as it is his department that is conducting the review so he cannot blame anyone else if they fail their obligations. Hopefully they do a good job.
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Categories: Tony Abbott