No Need To Step Up Immigration Checks After Bombs

No need to step up immigration checks after bombs: Minister

The Sydney Morning Herald
July 19, 2009

There is no “immediate danger” of Jemaah Islamiah (JI) operatives relocating to Australia, Immigration Minister Chris Evans says.

Senator Evans told Sky News that Australia's security checks were already strong and there was no immediate need to step up efforts to stop JI members immigrating here.

“We don't think that's an immediate danger,” Senator Evans said on Sunday.

“They're operating largely in Indonesia and we will obviously help the Indonesian authorities in combating terrorism where we can.

“We remain on high alert in Australia to any potential terrorist threats. We've put a lot of effort, a lot of resources into it and will continue to do so.”

JI has been blamed for attacks on two Jakarta hotels that took the lives of three Australian businessmen, among others.

The fact the bombers had posed as hotel guests showed the constant challenges of fighting terrorism, Senator Evans said.

“These people will go to any lengths and as it seems they may have been suicide bombers there's no question this is very hard to counter,” he said.

“But Indonesian authorities have made great strides in recent years, they've been quite successful in countering JI, but this was, obviously, a very tragic incident.

“It reminds us all that the fight against terrorism is going to be a long one, and we have to continue to renew our efforts into what is a dreadful situation, where people are prepared to kill and maim people and give up their own lives in this senseless terrorism.”