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Big increase in counter-terror unit interventions

NEWS: NZ Security, Dec 2015 / Jan 2016

According to a 20 November press release from the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection Peter Dutton, there’s been a significant increase in the number of interventions Counter-Terrorism Units are making at Australia’s international airports.

Since July, 199 passengers have been offloaded from flights by CTU officers for national security reasons, concerns about their intended travel destination or other suspicious behavior – a significant increase in total offloads.

The CTU program is part of the Government’s $630 million funding package for agencies involved in counter-terrorism activities. Mr Dutton said that since the CTUs began operating at airports in August 2014 there had been a total of 535 passenger offloads, 194,660 real time assessments nationally and more than 13,000 patrols.

“Maintaining strong security at our borders is critically important in stopping those with evil intent or impressionable young people who have fallen prey to terrorist propaganda from leaving Australia to join murderous terror groups like Islamic State,” said the minister.

“Many passengers subject to offload are able to continue their journey at a later time, but a significant number of people of national security concern have been detected during the CTU offload process.

“Much of the work these units do cannot be made public, but the instance of five young men prevented from travelling to the Middle East revealed in August this year is not an isolated case”, he said.

“Recently Australian Border Force officers formed a suspicion that a minor was potentially travelling to join conflicts in the Middle East. After questioning and an examination of his baggage he was prevented from travelling and referred to other agencies for investigation. Again this is not an isolated incident.”

Back to Border 

Border Force: increase in CTU interventions preventing potential 'foreign fighters' from travelling?

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