Experts available to comment on Sydney siege

The University of Western Sydney has the following experts available for media interviews and comment on the Sydney siege:


Former NSW Police detective and policing lecturer Dr Michael Kennedy from UWSCollege is an expert on police operations. During his time with New South Wales Police Dr Kennedy worked as a detective at the Bureau of Crime Intelligence, Organised Crime Squad, Major Crime Squad and the NSW State Crime Commission.


Dr Milad Milani, from the UWS Religion and Society Research Centre, researches how historical events are still shaping the Arab world today.

"The man at the Sydney siege displayed the Shahada banner, the Islamic testament of faith, which like the ISIS flag adopts the black standard that the Prophet Mohammed used," he says.

"Yet while his banner may appear to be identifying with ancient symbols of Islam, and more modern adaptations by groups like ISIS, his violent, unprovoked actions clearly prove he is not a man of true faith."

"In no way does this man represent Muslims in Australia, who are a peaceful and important part of our community."

Social Media

Associate Professor Gwyneth Howell, from the UWS School of Humanities and Communication Arts has researched the use of social media during disasters.

"Residents of Sydney are using social media to tell the world that they will not accept this terror and will no let this change our community," says Associate Professor Howell.

"The quiet humanity being expressed online, and the #illridewithyou anti-racism campaign, are great examples of how we now come together online in times of tragedy and share our shock and grief, and start to rebuild."

"Like the recent #putoutyourbats campaign for Phil Hughes, if we can take anything positive away from this awful event it's that Australians turn to social media to provide an invaluable form of psychological first aid."


16 December 2014

Media contact: Paul Grocott, Senior Media Officer