27 May 2024
Thursday 25 April 2024 - 00:22
Story Code : 420317
Source : RT

Australia raids ‘extremism’ suspects after church stabbing

Canberra has refused to identify the religion or motives of seven persons taken into custody
The Iran Project : Seven people were detained in Sydney on Wednesday in a counter-terrorism operation involving over 400 local, state and federal law enforcement officers, Australian police have said.
A police officer in Sydney
A police officer in Sydney
According to The Iran Project,The raids were a follow-up to the stabbing of an Assyrian Christian bishop earlier this month, which the authorities classified as a terrorist incident. 

“From that initial incident, a number of associates were identified that we believe warranted further close attention and investigation,” New South Wales Police Deputy Commissioner David Hudson told reporters.

The decision to carry out the raid was motivated by concerns that they “posed an unacceptable risk to the people of New South Wales, and our current, purely investigative strategies could not adequately ensure public safety,” Hudson added. 

Seven “juveniles” between the ages of 15 and 17 have been arrested as a result of the operation. Police have described them as adherents of a “religiously motivated violent extremist ideology,” which they declined to name. Five more minors are cooperating with the authorities and have not been detained.
The behavior of the youths led the authorities to believe “it was likely that an attack might ensue” and that police would be unable to prevent it, Hudson added.

However, Deputy Commissioner Krissy Barrett of the Australian federal police said that they had “no evidence of specific locations, times, or targets of a violent act” at this time.

Australian authorities grew concerned after the April 15 attack on Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel, an Assyrian Christian, in the Sydney suburb of Wakeley. The 16-year-old suspect was caught on a live stream entering the Christ the Good Shepherd church, approaching the bishop in the middle of the evening service then stabbing him repeatedly in the head and chest. 

Eyewitnesses reported that the suspect said he was avenging the bishop’s insults against “my Prophet,” suggesting that the assailant might be Muslim. Bishop Emmanuel has been critical of Islam in the past. However, the Australian authorities have refused to identify the suspect’s religion or motives.

The government in Canberra has also tried to censor the video of the incident on platforms such as X (formerly Twitter) and Meta, calling it “gratuitous or offensive violence with a high degree of impact or detail.”

Wakeley is the home of Australia’s largest community of Assyrian Christians, many of whom have fled conflicts in the Middle East. 
Reporter : Editorial of The Iran Project
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