Joo-Cheong Tham



A Risk-Based Analysis of Australia’s Counterterrorism Financing Regime

Not only are the benefits of the financial “War on Terror” as waged in Australia uncertain, but it also gives rise to particular dangers. The Australian counterterrorist financing regime is based on executive power to ban “terrorist” groups, power that raises the prospect of secret and arbitrary proscriptions. Flows of information under this regime are largely kept secret, raising questions of accountability. Further, while the regime imposes increased obligations upon financial institutions, it also confers significant discretion upon these entities in relation to their compliance with the laws. Financial institutions have also had considerable say-so over the content of these laws. Such power is problematic: it poses challenges to democracy and the privacy of citizens and gives rise to the risk of racial and religious discrimination.

war on terror–Australia, counterterrorism financing regime, accountability, private power, privacy, discrimination

Citation: Social Justice Vol. 34, No. 2 (2007): 138-152