The Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security (PJCIS) has commenced a review of the re-listing of Jama’at Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and listing of Neo-Jama’at Mujahideen Bangladesh (Neo-JMB) as terrorist organisations under the Criminal Code Act 1995 (the Criminal Code).
Jama’at Mujahideen Bangladesh is a Bangladeshi Sunni violent extremist group whose ideology broadly aligns with al-Qa’ida’s global jihadist ideals.
Neo-Jama’at Mujahideen Bangladesh was first listed as an alias of Jama’at Mujahideen Bangladesh under Division 102 of the Criminal Code on 9 June 2018 and is now considered to be an organisation that operates independently of Jama’at Mujahideen Bangladesh.
Under section 102.1A of the Criminal Code, the Committee may review listings of terrorist organisations and report its findings to each house of the Parliament within the 15 sitting day disallowance period.
Senator James Paterson Liberal Party of Australia, VIC (Chair)
Hon Anthony Byrne MP Australian Labor Party, Holt VIC (Deputy Chair)
Senator the Hon Eric Abetz Liberal Party of Australia, TAS
Dr Anne Aly MP Australian Labor Party, Cowan WA
Hon Mark Dreyfus QC MP Australian Labor Party, Isaacs VIC
Senator the Hon David Fawcett Liberal Party of Australia, SA
Ms Celia Hammond MP Liberal Party of Australia, Curtin WA
Senator the Hon Kristina Keneally Australian Labor Party, NSW
Mr Julian Leeser MP Liberal Party of Australia, Berowra NSW
Senator Jenny McAllister Australian Labor Party, NSW
Mr Tim Wilson MP Liberal Party of Australia, Goldstein VIC
Role of the Committee
The Committee is appointed under the Intelligence Services Act 2001(the IS Act)and has three main types of functions, including:
- providing oversight of Australian intelligence agencies by reviewing their administration and expenditure;
- building bipartisan support for national security legislation by reviewing national security bills introduced to Parliament; and
- ensuring national security legislation remains necessary, proportionate and effective by conducting statutory reviews.
In addition to those functions, under section 102.1A of the Criminal Code, the Committee may also review any regulations made for the listing (or re-listing) of a “terrorist organisation” and report the Committee’s comments and recommendations to each House of the Parliament before the end of the applicable disallowance period (15 sitting days after the regulation was laid before that House).
Further, the Committee may review and report on the declaration of any terrorist organisation for the purposes of section 35AA of the Australian Citizenship Act 2007.
Further responsibilities of the PJCIS Committee also include (not limited to) overseeing the organizations such as ASIO, AGO, DIO, ASD:
- the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO),
- Australian Secret Intelligence Service (ASIS),
- Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation (AGO),
- Defence Intelligence Organisation (DIO),
- Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) and
- Office of National Intelligence (ONI).
The PJCIS Committee also monitors and reviews the performance by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) of its functions under Part 5.3 of the Criminal Code (terrorism);
Members of the public are welcome to make submissions to this review. Submissions should be provided no later than 5pm on Friday, 2 July 2021.
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