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New draft of Australian anti-terror bill an improvement, say leaders

[JURIST] Australian state and territorial leaders were given a new draft of a proposed federal anti-terrorism bill Friday and are meeting this weekend to discuss it. The previous draft [text] drew heavy criticism [JURIST report] from ACT Chief Minister Jon Stanhope [official website] last week for its provisions concerning control orders and preventative detentions; Stanhope cautiously supported the new draft Saturday, citing an improvement in the control orders section, though he is still concerned with the limited role of judiciary in overseeing the detentions. New South Wales Premier Morris Iemma [official profile] said the new draft authorizes retired civilian judges acting in an executive or administrative capacity to issue the detention orders, thus taking the orders out of the domain of the courts. "We want an individual who is subjected to one of these orders to be able to appeal on the merits of the application, not just on technicalities of law," he said, calling the detention proposal "a clear breach of the COAG [Council of Australian Governments [official website]] agreement in relation to the checks and balances that would apply." ABC News has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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