NEW YORK: Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott hailed international police cooperation during a threat briefing at the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force in New York.
Abbott’s visit came just days after authorities in Australia carried out anti-terror raids. He praised Australia’s partnership with US security forces, underlining the importance of swapping information.
“The relationships between Australian and US law enforcement agencies are extremely strong,” he said at the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Manhattan offices.
“It is, of course, absolutely critical that we have this ability to exchange intelligence and capabilities.”
The pre-dawn raids carried out by more than 800 officers in Sydney and Brisbane on September 18 foiled a plot by Islamic State jihadists to carry out executions, authorities said.
The FBI said that while no specific threat existed in New York, it encouraged cooperation between countries.
“Terrorism can’t be fought alone, it must be fought together,” FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge George Venizelos said.
Fifteen people were arrested following the Australia raids, and authorities warned of “lone wolf” terror attacks from radicalized Australians returning from Iraq and Syria, where militants from the Islamic State group have taken swaths of territory.
About 12,000 foreign fighters are thought to have traveled to Syria and Iraq from 74 countries, including around 60 from Australia.