August 21, 2009
THE Rudd Government has listed Somali-based Al-Shabaab as a terrorist organisation.In a Commonwealth Gazette statement dated August 21, 2009, Foreign Minister Stephen Smith listed the group under subsection 15 (1) of the Charter of the United Nations Act 1945.
The Government has been under pressure to proscribe the group, which has been listed as a terrorist organisation in the United States since February 2008.
Earlier in August, Australian police arrested several men with suspected links to al-Shabaab.
It's alleged the men intended to launch a suicide attack on the Holsworthy army barracks in Sydney.
According to the United States National Counter-Terrorism Centre website, senior members of the al-Shabaab leadership are affiliated with al-Qaeda and are believed to have fought with them in Afghanistan.
It said al-Shabaab was the militant wing of the Somalia Islamic Courts Council that took over most of southern Somalia in late 2006.
"In December 2006 and January 2007, Somali Government and Ethiopian forces routed it in a two-week war," the NCTC said.
"Since the end of 2006 it has led a violent insurgency, using guerrilla warfare and terrorist tactics against the continued Ethiopian presence in Somalia, the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia, and non-governmental aid organisations."
No comment was immediately available from Attorney-General Robert McClelland's or Mr Smith's offices.
Source: The Australian