Kuranda Seyit, Director of the Forum on Australia's Islamic Relations, talked to CNN's Christiane Amanpour on Monday about the issue of radicalization in the country.
By Madalena Araujo, CNN
In the wake of the more than 16-hour Sydney siege by a self-styled Muslim cleric, former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd told CNN's Christiane Amanpour on Monday that jihadism is a challenge that concerns all, and tackling it requires collective effort.
“This violent jihadism represents a challenge for civilized peoples everywhere. And so it’s a challenge for us all to come together and I believe work at two levels.”
“The first is through the intensification of our efforts, as security and law enforcement authorities around the world work collaboratively against this common foe to us all.”
“And secondly, dealing also with some of the lessons which are slowly emerging from countries around the world about what motivates such people to join these organizations from coherent multicultural societies around the world as well.”
Early Tuesday, Australian authorities stormed the Lindt Chocolate Café, where a gunman identified as Man Haron Monis had been holding hostages for some 16 hours. Monis was shot and killed, and two of the 17 hostages died.
by Henry Hullah
When Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 was shot down there were 298 people on board - almost forty of them Australian.
Australian opposition leader Bill Shorten told Amanpour that the Australian government will call for answers to this tragedy in one voice.
"On this matter there is no internal political debate in Australia. We are united in our grief and we are united to get to the bottom of what's happened."
It is a point of union in the otherwise contentious arena of Australian politics.
But the opposition leader has not taken his focus off other issues that impact Australia and its future, particularly climate change.
Prime Minister Tony Abbot's current leadership has led to a unique unwinding of global warming legislation by becoming the first country to repeal a carbon tax law.
It is a decision Shorten vehemently opposed and one he fears will affect people far sooner than they think if no action is taken.
"It's not just for our children and their children. For the current generation climate change is real, and governments will need to act."
Part one of Christiane Amanpour's conversation with Former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
Part two of Christiane Amanpour's conversation with Former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
By Mick Krever, CNN
Allegations that Australia spied on the Indonesian president’s phone are a “big issue” for the two countries’ relationship, former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in an exclusive interview conducted Tuesday and aired Thursday.
It was her first news interview since being forced from power by her own party earlier this year.
As fallout from NSA leaker Edward Snowden’s revelations landed in Australia, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono froze military and intelligence gathering with his Australian ally.
Gillard's successor, Prime Minister Tony Abbott, has refused to apologize for the alleged spying, but has expressed regret for the embarrassment that media reports have caused to Indonesia.
Though Gillard said it was “not appropriate” for her to comment on “intelligence questions,” she praised U.S. President Barack Obama’s reaction to similar allegations that the U.S. spied on German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
“If he had been aware he wouldn’t have authorized it, and he could certainly say for the future that it wouldn’t happen again,” Gillard told Amanpour. “And I think that that’s an appropriate response from Australia to Indonesia at this very difficult time.”
By Mick Krever and Ken Olshansky, CNN
Will politics exacerbate Australia’s raging wildfires?
It’s not supposed to be fire season yet in Australia, where summer hasn’t even begun. But more than sixty devastating bush fires are already raging in a ring around Sydney.
Just a month ago, Australians elected a new prime minister, Tony Abbott, who once called climate change “absolute c**p.” (He has since walked those remarks back, calling them a bit of “rhetorical hyperbole.”)
Though it is unclear that climate change directly caused these wild fires – police arrested two teenagers for starting two of the Sydney fires –local officials do fear those hot, dry, and windy conditions this week could exacerbate the situation.
In the past 12 months, Australia has lived through the hottest summer, in the hottest year, on record.
“There is a real political debate about how to deal with this issue of climate change,” Stan Grant, international editor of Sky News Australia, told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Monday.
“Tony Abbot in the past has been citizen for being a climate skeptic, if not a climate change denier,” Grant said. “Now he stepped back a lot from that hard line that he’s taken, but he’s been very ideological when it comes to how to deal with this.”