By ROD McGUIRK
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia intends to add far-right extremist group The Base and the entirety of the Lebanese group Hezbollah to its list of outlawed terrorist organizations.
Hezbollah’s External Security Organization has been listed as a terrorist organization under Australia’s Criminal Code since 2003, Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews said on Wednesday.
Including all Hezbollah entities as terrorist organizations would make being a member of or supporting those entities a criminal offense.
“The group continues to threaten terrorist attacks and provides support to terrorist organizations,” Andrews said in a statement.
The Base, which originated in the United States, would become only the second far-right group to be designated a terrorist organization in Australia after the British-based Sonnenkrieg Division was listed in August.
The remaining 25 terrorist organizations on Australia’s list are Muslim groups.
“The Base is a violent, racist, neo-Nazi group known by security agencies to be planning and preparing terrorist attacks,” Andrews said.
“The Base is currently proscribed as a terrorist organization by the governments of Canada and the United Kingdom and is known to have organized paramilitary training camps overseas,” she added.
Andrews wrote to state and territory governments to consult on the two proposed listings. She said she aimed to finalize the listings as soon as possible.
Lebanese Ambassador to Australia Milad Raad was not immediately available for comment.
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