Iran says it requested the extradition of Sydney siege gunman Man Haron Monis 14 years ago, but Australia refused to hand him over because there was no extradition agreement between the two countries. THE entire nation is mourning the loss of two heroes who laid their lives for others when an armed self-styled cleric Man Haron Monis, 50 held 17 hostages at Lindt Café in Martin Place in Sydney.
The hostages were forced to stand with their hands up at the windows and a black and white flag could be seen on the window. Martin Place was shut down with trains stopped and roads blocked, some of the nearby buildings including the Opera House, the State Library, Channel Seven, the NSW Parliamentary executive offices, the NSW Supreme Court’s criminal courts, the Downing Centre and several city legal chambers soon were evacuated.
Police negotiated with him for 16 hours before officers stormed the building and two hostages as well as Monis were killed during the confrontation. Monis opened fire after an argument with police forcing police to respond. The police stormed the building, firing live rounds and throwing stun grenades. The two hostages died in the scuffle who are identified as Barrister Katrina Dawson, 38 who died of a heart attack on the way to hospital was a mother of three. Dawson was a well-respected lawyer who worked for a firm on Phillip Street and had halted at the café to grab a coffee before reaching office.
The other victim, the Café manager Tori Johnson, 34 who attempted to wrestle the shotgun away from the gunman died of a gunshot wound. Johnson had worked at the Lindt Café for more than two years and had also worked in the service industry in the US and Australia. Five other have been injured including a police officer who is in non-life threatening condition. He suffered a wound from the shot in his face.
At least three as reported were taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries including a woman who was shot in the shoulder. The gunman killed during the siege at the Lindt Chocolate Cafe in Sydney’s Martin Place was an Iranian cleric with a violent criminal past. He came to Australia in the late 1990s , obtained political asylum in 2001. He fled Iran because he was in fear of his life from the regime at that time.
He was on bail for a string of violent offences, including being an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife. He was also facing more than 50 sexual and indecent assault charges and had a conviction for sending abusive letters to families of deceased Australian soldiers. His former lawyer, Manny Conditsis, said that Monis was an isolated figure who had acted alone.
Iran says it requested the extradition of Sydney siege gunman Man Haron Monis 14 years ago, but Australia refused to hand him over because there was no extradition agreement between the two countries. Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who has warned of militant plans to strike Australian targets, said there were indications the hostage situation at the Lindt Cafe was politically motivated.
“This is a very disturbing incident. I can understand the concerns and anxieties of the Australian people.”
Australia, a reliable ally of the United States and its escalating action against the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, is on high alert for attacks by home-grown militants returning from fighting in the Middle East. Police had not had any direct contact with the hostage taker, said Andrew Scipione, police commissioner for the state of New South Wales.
In September, Australian anti-terrorism police said they had thwarted an imminent threat to behead a random member of the public and days later, a teenager in Melbourne was shot dead after attacking two anti-terrorism officers with a knife. The incident has not yet been confirmed as a terrorist attack. Mr Abbott said the public had a right to know how someone with a long and chequered history was not on the appropriate watchlists, and said he wanted answers.
“How can someone like that be entirely at large in the community?” Mr Abbott said. “These are questions that we need to look at carefully and calmly and methodically to learn the right lessons and to act upon them. “That’s what we’ll be doing in the days and weeks ahead.” The Prime Minister acknowledged Monis still might not have been stopped, even if he had been closely watched.
“Even if this individual, this sick and disturbed individual, had been front and centre on our watch-lists, even if this individual had been monitored 24 hours a day, it’s quite likely, certainly possibly, that this incident could have taken place because the level of control that would be necessary to prevent people from going about their daily life would be very, very high indeed,” he said