NSW Police are introducing a 'shoot first' policy for terrorists

NSW Police acting commissioner Nick Kaldas. Screenshot

The NSW police are implementing a “shoot first” policy to deal with armed terrorists.

NSW Police acting commissioner Nick Kaldas said police are being trained to shoot on sight in a change in tactics to deal with extremists.

The new policy comes nearly 12 months after Man Haron Monis held a number of people hostage in the Lindt Cafe in Sydney before armed officers stormed the building 16 hours later and shot the gunman dead after he’d killed cafe manager Tori Johnson.

The new approach abandons the “contain and negotiate” policy in place for two decades. Kaldas said “contain and negotiate” will still be used for domestic situations, which can generally be resolved without incident the longer they last, but there was a new urgency required to deal with terrorism incidents.

Last month a lone gunman, 15-year-old Farhad Khalil Mohammad Jabar, shot and killed 58-year-old accountant Curtis Cheng, who worked for the police, outside the NSW Police headquarters in Parramatta.

The acting commissioner said that in dealing with a “terrorism environment” and extremists with a “preconceived aim of dying and [who] wants to kill as many people as possible” it was “far more urgent for us to intervene”.

NSW Police are also looking at increasing the weaponry available to officers to deal with the growing threat of terrorism on Australian soil.

Armed offender training for the officers involved in the shoot first policy is still in the pilot stage. The program is based on the US model and FBI-trained instructors are being used to teach the program.

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