SYDNEY – Australia’s armed forces have been authorized by the government to take part in the fight against terrorism in the country, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced on Monday.
The changes will allow the military to provide anti-terrorism training to the police, who will continue to spearhead counter-terrorism efforts in the country.
“The measures that I’m announcing today will ensure that the ADF (Australian Defence Force) is more readily available to respond to terrorism incidents, providing state and territory police with the extra support to call on when they need it,” Turnbull said during a visit to military barracks in Sydney, according to his official Twitter account.
“Our enemies are agile and innovative. We have to stay ahead of them,” he added.
Australia raised the terror alert for the country to high in September 2014 and has passed a series of anti-terrorism laws to prevent attacks on its territory.
However, since then, the country has witnessed several terrorist attacks, the worst among them a 17-hour long siege in a cafe in Sydney in December 2014 by a self-proclaimed cleric of Iranian-origin, Man Haron Monis, that left three people dead, including the attacker.