Terror suspect citizenship laws signed off

THE government's controversial new laws that could strip people fighting for terrorist organisation overseas of their dual citizenship will be released today.

The legislation is due to be presented to the Coalition party room this morning and introduced to parliament tomorrow. 

The plan could see the Immigration Minister given powers to strip the citizenship of dual nationals even if they had not been convicted of a criminal offence.

It is understood the controversial plan was signed off last night. 

The plan had divided Cabinet for several weeks after the legal fraternity said the legislation's validity could be challenged in the High Court.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott said on Tuesday dual nationals would be stripped of their citizenship but remained tight-lipped on other aspects of the proposed legislation.

"We have had legal advice from a number of sources and we are confident that this legislation can minimise constitutional risk," he said.

"Our message to people who leave Australia to fight for terrorist armies in the Middle East is that we do not want you back.

"If you are a dual national, we will not let you back because the first duty of government is to keep our country safe and the last thing any of us want to see is terrorists loose on our streets."

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said it was time for Mr Abbott's tough talking to end and the onus was now on him to deliver legislation that would protect Australians.



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