SENATOR KRISTINA KENEALLY
DEPUTY LABOR LEADER IN THE SENATE
SHADOW MINISTER FOR HOME AFFAIRS
SHADOW MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND CITIZENSHIP
SENATOR FOR NEW SOUTH WALES
ANDREW GILES MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR MULTICULTURAL AFFAIRS
SHADOW MINISTER ASSISTING THE MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND CITIZENSHIP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR CITIES AND URBAN INFRASTRUCTURE
MEMBER FOR SCULLIN
Labor hopes the sentencing of an Australian-born terrorist and right-wing extremist in New Zealand will serve justice to the victims of the Christchurch shootings and a sense of closure for their family members.
The individual was sentenced in New Zealand’s High Court for the murder of 51 worshippers at two Christchurch mosques and 40 attempted murders on 15 March 2019, along with one charge of terrorism.
The Australian-born terrorist and right-wing extremist has been sentenced to the maximum penalty of a life sentence without parole – a first for New Zealand.
The individual who committed these heinous attacks is not simply a “gunman” – he is a violent right-wing extremist, a terrorist and a white supremacist who committed a horrendous act, driven by hate and fear.
This individual’s vile ideology and its sources should be named and condemned.
Addressing this serious threat begins with acknowledging and correctly naming it.
Regrettably, we still have not had a serious conversation about how this individual was radicalised or how much of this occurred in Australia. But it is clear that at least some of these ugly ideas would have been shaped by conversations and ideas prevalent here.
This individual’s actions also highlight the growing transnational and online nature of the problem – with at least two further attacks inspired by the violence perpetrated in Christchurch.
The Parliament, media and wider community must take the threat of right-wing extremism seriously.
As the ASIO Director-General has warned, we cannot ignore the fact that right-wing extremism is a growing and a real terrorist threat in our nation and the world.
We cannot allow vacuums to develop that can legitimise views or legitimise people who want to sow discord and racism in our diverse, multicultural and multi-faith community.
Australians stand in solidarity with our New Zealand sisters and brothers – we will always unite with them against racism, hatred, fear and division.