Australian Zionists have joined the fray welcoming a raft of new sanctions against Hamas announced by the Albanese government.
On Saturday, Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong announced counter-terrorism financial and travel sanctions were being imposed on eight people and one entity in response to Hamas’ October 7 attacks.
In a statement, she said the individuals included Hamas members, operatives and financial facilitators, alongside a currency exchange owned by one of the individuals.
Counter-terrorism financing sanctions against Hamas in its entirety have been in place since 2001.
Senator Wong said taking the additional sanctioning steps demonstrates “that they are actively engaged in the support and facilitation of terrorism”.
It is therefore a criminal offence, punishable by up to 10 years’ imprisonment and heavy fines, to provide assets to the sanctioned individuals or entities, or use or deal with their assets.
“These measures enable their activity to be prevented and holds them and those that transact with them directly to account,” Senator Wong said in a statement.
The Zionist Federation of Australia welcomed the move on Sunday.
President Jeremy Leibler said the government had “put its money where its mouth is”.
“Hamas terrorises Israeli civilians and imposes a medieval Islamist dictatorship over the people of Gaza. These sanctions demonstrate the Australian Government’s commitment to fighting terrorism,” he said.
“Since the beginning of the current war, the Australian Government has backed Israel’s objective to remove Hamas from Gaza. “This expanded sanctions regime is an important indication that Australia continues to stand with Israel in its just war against Hamas.”
The sanctions come as the push for Labor to call for a ceasefire in Gaza intensifies.
During the week, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s own branch called on the government to take stronger action to protect Palestinian civilians.
The government has strengthened its demands for Israel to abide by the rules of international law, and Australia backed a United Nations Security Resolution calling for the protection of civilian lives, but has stopped short of explicitly demanding a ceasefire.
Earlier, the Coalition’s foreign affairs spokesman James Paterson told ABC’s Insiders Israel needed to follow international laws of conflict but the world understood the mission of destroying Hamas was crucial.
He said Hamas was denying the people in Gaza of their rights.
“They have a right not to be treated by Hamas as human shields. They have a right not to be held as hostages by Hamas,” he said.
“It is not just 239 Israelis. Two million Gazans used by Hamas in their conflict.
“Hamas has options here, too. The war
would end tomorrow if Hamas are he leased the captives.
“The war would end tomorrow if the Hamas leadership gave up.”
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/breaking-news/penny-wong-announces-new-hamas-sanctions-welcomed-by-zionists/news-story/5fd2b102cfddbe36bef43ef31445b478 Penny Wong announces new Hamas sanctions, welcomed by Zionists