News National Jacqui Lambie wants halal crackdown

Jacqui Lambie wants halal crackdown

Senator Jacqui Lambie. (AAP Image/Lukas Coch) NO ARCHIVING
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Jacqui Lambie will introduce a private senator’s bill to force halal certifiers to disclose how their fees are spent, suggesting “halal money” funds the Islamic State.

The Tasmanian Senator said she had received hundreds of concerned emails from her constituents who feared halal certification fees funded militants in Iraq and Syria.

• Halal certification: what you need to know
• Australian boycott of halal products

Speaking in the senate on Tuesday night, Ms Lambie said there was no formal reporting on how the certification fees, which can be as high as $27,000, were being spent.

Halal is food that is permissible for observing Muslims and must be processed and manufactured according to Islamic law.

Certification assessments are conducted by accredited Islamic organisations around Australia.

“Given that our enemies in Islamic State are receiving a steady cashflow to control their caliphate in Syria and Iraq, why isn’t there a legal requirement in Australia for halal certification fees to be disclosed?” Ms Lambie said.

A widespread campaign to boycott the halal certification has gained momentum in Australia, with one producer even dumping the certification in November amid public pressure.

Ms Lambie said she would introduce legislation which would stop the “financing of terrorists and Australia’s enemies through halal money” if the government didn’t take action.

Speaking to the ABC in November, Fazal Muhammed from the Queensland Halal Certification Service said certification fees were spent locally on health and education.

“This benefits Australia, benefits locally, benefits people here, working here, that are trying to raise their families here and [this attack] is hurting them,” Mr Muhammed said.

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