AFP rejects Homeland Security mega-portfolio push

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) has dismissed reports of a federal government proposal for a US-style Department of Homeland Security.

Sky News reported that spy agency ASIO and the AFP recently advised against the creation of a new mega-department.

The AFP also rejected the claims regarding first response arrangements for terrorism incidents as “incorrect” and assertions that arrangements had been discussed at a recent AFP executive meeting in Manly were “wrong”, in a statement on Tuesday morning.

“The AFP works closely with its state and commonwealth partners, including through the Australian New Zealand Counter Terrorism Committee, in the areas of counter terrorism enforcement and response,” the statement read.

“Responsibilities for dealing with terrorism incidents are clearly articulated and publicly available here. There is no project or plan in relation to changes to these existing arrangements.”

Minister Keenan and Commander Bachi, who has been incorrectly described as a Superintendent in various media reports, did not attend the AFP meeting at any stage, the AFP spokesman said.

He said the AFP had not been approached by state law enforcement members.

The AFP did however acknowledge that the response to the Martin Place incident in 2014 was being considered by the NSW Coroner, but refused to confirm or deny whether the Homeland Security proposal has pre-empted any outcomes from the inquiry.

Originally published at The New Daily.

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About Alana Mitchelson

Alana Mitchelson is a journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Follow her on Twitter at @AlanaMitchelson.

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