Conflicts & War

Australia to include Palestinian group Hamas in extremist list

Sydney, Australia, Feb 17 (EFE).- Australia reported Thursday it would include all of Palestinian group Hamas on its list of extremist organizations, not only its al-Qassam Brigade armed wing.

Authorities also designated the United States far-right group the National Socialist Order as an extremist group and renewed the classification of the jihadists from Abu Sayyaf, Jemaah Islamiyah and al-Qa’ida, since their inclusion on the list expired on Apr. 9.

“The views of Hamas and the violent extremist groups listed (Thursday) are deeply disturbing and there is no place in Australia for their hateful ideologies,” Home Secretary Karen Andrews said in a statement.

The designation imposes criminal penalties for financing or supporting any of these groups, with maximum penalties of up to 25 years in prison.

“It is vital that our laws target not only terrorist acts and terrorists, but also the organizations that plan, finance and carry out these acts,” Andrews said.

Hamas controls the Gaza Strip, subject to a blockade since 2007 by Israel, and maintains the promise to liberate Jerusalem by force while claiming frequent attacks against Israeli targets.

The United States and more recently the European Union, among other nations such as Japan, Canada and the United Kingdom, keep Hamas on the list of extremist groups. EFE


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