2005 Cronulla riots
Overview
The 2005 Cronulla riots were a series of sectarian clashes
Sectarian violence
Sectarian violence and/or sectarian strife is violence inspired by sectarianism, that is, between different sects of one particular mode of ideology or religion within a nation/community...

 and mob violence originating in Cronulla
Cronulla, New South Wales
Cronulla is a beachside suburb, in southern Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Cronulla is located 26 kilometres south of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of Sutherland Shire....

, New South Wales
New South Wales
New South Wales is a state of :Australia, located in the east of the country. It is bordered by Queensland, Victoria and South Australia to the north, south and west respectively. To the east, the state is bordered by the Tasman Sea, which forms part of the Pacific Ocean. New South Wales...

 and spreading, over the next few nights, to additional Sydney
Sydney
Sydney is the most populous city in Australia and the state capital of New South Wales. Sydney is located on Australia's south-east coast of the Tasman Sea. As of June 2010, the greater metropolitan area had an approximate population of 4.6 million people...

 suburbs.

On 4 December 2005, a group of volunteer surf lifesavers were assaulted by a group of young men of Middle Eastern appearance, with several other violent assaults occurring over the next week. These incidents were widely reported and commented on in Sydney media.
Encyclopedia
The 2005 Cronulla riots were a series of sectarian clashes
Sectarian violence
Sectarian violence and/or sectarian strife is violence inspired by sectarianism, that is, between different sects of one particular mode of ideology or religion within a nation/community...

 and mob violence originating in Cronulla
Cronulla, New South Wales
Cronulla is a beachside suburb, in southern Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Cronulla is located 26 kilometres south of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of Sutherland Shire....

, New South Wales
New South Wales
New South Wales is a state of :Australia, located in the east of the country. It is bordered by Queensland, Victoria and South Australia to the north, south and west respectively. To the east, the state is bordered by the Tasman Sea, which forms part of the Pacific Ocean. New South Wales...

 and spreading, over the next few nights, to additional Sydney
Sydney
Sydney is the most populous city in Australia and the state capital of New South Wales. Sydney is located on Australia's south-east coast of the Tasman Sea. As of June 2010, the greater metropolitan area had an approximate population of 4.6 million people...

 suburbs.

On 4 December 2005, a group of volunteer surf lifesavers were assaulted by a group of young men of Middle Eastern appearance, with several other violent assaults occurring over the next week. These incidents were widely reported and commented on in Sydney media. An initially peaceful crowd gathered in the morning of 11 December 2005 and by midday, approximately 5,000 people gathered at Cronulla beach to protest against a recent spate of violence against locals.

However, fuelled by alcohol, the crowd turned to violence when a young man of “Middle Eastern appearance” was spotted on the beach. He was surrounded by a crowd outside a local hotel and attacked. Retaliatory riots also took place that night and on subsequent nights, resulting in extensive property damage and several more assaults, including one stabbing and even some attacks against ambulance and police officers.

The attacks were widely condemned by local, state and federal members of parliament, police, local community leaders and residents of Cronulla and adjacent areas. A large number of arrests were made over the subsequent months, from both the initial riot on 11 December and the retaliatory riots held over the subsequent nights. The incidents tarnished Australia's international image, with several countries issuing travel warnings.

Lead-up

NSW police had been recording racial and ethnic tensions and incidents in and around Cronulla since October 2005.

Just after 3 pm on Sunday, 4 December 2005, police were called to North Cronulla Beach following a report of an assault on two off-duty surf lifesavers by members of a group of eight Middle Eastern men. A verbal exchange had taken place after three lifesavers approached a group of four young Lebanese men on Cronulla Beach
Cronulla Beach
Cronulla Beach , is a patrolled beach on Bate Bay, in Cronulla, New South Wales, Australia. The Cronulla Pavilion and the Cronulla Lifesaving Club are two prominent buildings located close to the sand. Cronulla Park sits behind the beach. The Cronulla Rock Pools are between Cronulla Beach and North...

 with both groups accusing the other of staring at them. One of the Lebanese men responded to the accusations, "I’m allowed to, now fuck off and leave our beach", to which a lifesaver responded, "I come down here out of my own spare time to save you dumb cunts from drowning, now piss off you scum".

The verbal exchange escalated with one Lebanese youth attempting to defuse the situation. Another then threw a punch, missing, prompting a pushing match that escalated into a fight. One of the lifesavers was badly hurt after falling and striking his head. One of the lifesavers later informed police that the four were part of a group of eight Lebanese that had been on the beach most of the day and that there had been no problems with their prior behaviour. Despite media reports to the contrary, no "Middle Eastern Men converged on the area" and there were no more than the original eight present.
A media report claimed that there was already tension between the community and Lebanese youths before this event and people, particularly women, claimed to have been harassed, almost daily, by "groups of young Lebanese men" attempting to "pick them up" and describing the women as being "Aussie sluts".

The events were reported widely across the Sydney media, particularly on talkback radio. Alan Jones
Alan Jones (radio broadcaster)
Alan Belford Jones AO is an Australian radio broadcaster, former rugby union and rugby league coach and administrator.Jones hosts Sydney's most popular breakfast radio program, on radio station 2GB...

 of Sydney’s 2GB
2GB
2GB is a commercial radio station in Sydney, Australia broadcasting on 873 kHz, AM. It is one of Australia's most popular talk-back radio stations, and is the number one station in Sydney.-History:The station commenced broadcasting in August 1926...

 Radio called for “a rally, a street march, call it what you will. A community show of force”, calling the people responsible for the attack on the lifesavers “Middle Eastern grubs.” When a listener, Berta, commented that she had heard “really derogatory remarks” aimed at Middle Eastern people Jones interrupted stating “We don't have Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon may refer to:* Anglo-Saxons, a group that invaded Britain** Old English, their language** Anglo-Saxon England, their history, one of various ships* White Anglo-Saxon Protestant, an ethnicity* Anglo-Saxon economy, modern macroeconomic term...

 kids out there raping women in western Sydney
Sydney gang rapes
The Sydney gang rapes were a series of gang rape attacks committed by a group of up to fourteen Lebanese Australian men led by Bilal Skaf against European Australian women and teenage girls, as young as 14, in Sydney Australia in 2000...

.” Jones was later found to have breached the Australian Communications and Media Authority
Australian Communications and Media Authority
The Australian Communications and Media Authority is an Australian government statutory authority within the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy portfolio...

 (ACMA) Code of Conduct section 1.3(a), as his comments were “likely to encourage violence or brutality and to vilify people of Lebanese and Middle-Eastern backgrounds on the basis of ethnicity”.

Riots

Over the course of Sunday, 11 December 2005, approximately 5000 people gathered in and around North Cronulla Beach. Early in the morning people began to gather and impromptu barbecue
Barbecue
Barbecue or barbeque , used chiefly in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia is a method and apparatus for cooking meat, poultry and occasionally fish with the heat and hot smoke of a fire, smoking wood, or hot coals of...

s and “partying” took place. However, at 12:59 a young man of “Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

ern appearance” was spotted on the beach and the crowds began “chanting stuff [and] yelling out things” before rushing him. The man attempted to avoid the crowd by quickly entering "Northies" (a local pub) but the crowd forcibly dragged him out and attacked him. The police, having been in Cronulla since the early morning (including police helicopters and patrol boats), quickly intervened and resolved the situation. A Cronulla High School teacher later claimed that the crowd had attacked the man after he had shouted "I’m going to blow youse all up" as he was dragged out.

At 13:45 another two boys (from Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

) were surrounded by the crowd, and had bottles thrown at them, with the crowd repeatedly chanting “Fuck off Lebs!”, with the boys subsequently being able to escape by car. Chants and slogans such as “Fuck off Lebs!”, “We grew here, you flew here”, “Aussie Pride”, “Fuck off wogs!”, were repeated throughout the day by the crowd. The crowd also attacked the police by throwing beer bottles. Police vehicles were also swarmed and prevented from entering the area.

Around 14:00 another three males were assaulted on the beach with the crowd throwing sausages and beer bottles at them. At 13:30 two women verbally argued with a small group; the police arrived and both parties left. However, an hour later, they again met and a scuffle ensued.

Rumours had persisted throughout the day that an additional 600 people would arrive by train, mostly from the west of Cronulla, to join the crowds. At approximately 15:00 “two young men of Middle Eastern appearance” arrived at Cronulla train station with the crowd outside chanting “Fuck off wogs!”. The two men took refuge in the train. However, the crowd entered and began assaulting them; a police officer entered the train and cleared the crowd.
At 15:20 two separate assaults took place; one involved a crowd attacking a man of “middle eastern appearance” and throwing beer bottles. In this case an officer intervened and was able to remove the victim as they were both struck by the bottle. A second assault took place outside a Nando's
Nando's
Nando's is a casual dining restaurant group originating from South Africa with a Portuguese/Mozambican theme. Founded in 1987, Nando's operates in thirty countries on five continents....

 restaurant; 3 men were taken inside the restaurant as refuge and the diners already inside were moved towards the back. The glass doors and windows were broken and those inside were moved outside without incident.

Injuries and arrests

By the end of the day 26 people were treated for injuries. The 15:20 assault required both the victim and the police officer to receive hospital treatment. A total of 16 were arrested and charged with 42 offences including: malicious damage, assaulting a police officer, affray, offensive conduct, resisting arrest and numerous driving offences. One police officer was hit by a car and two ambulance officers were also amongst the injured as their ambulance, under mounted police
Mounted police
Mounted police are police who patrol on horseback or camelback. They continue to serve in remote areas and in metropolitan areas where their day-to-day function may be picturesque or ceremonial, but they are also employed in crowd control because of their mobile mass and height advantage and...

 escort, was surrounded and beer bottles were thrown, with one of the ambulance officers being hit on the head with a bottle and the other receiving lacerations on their arm.

Evening retaliation

At 19:45 around 100 locals of nearby Punchbowl
Punchbowl, New South Wales
Punchbowl, a suburb of local government areas City of Bankstown and the City of Canterbury is located 17 kilometres south-west of the Sydney central business district, in the state of New South Wales, Australia, and is a part of the South-western Sydney region.- History :Punchbowl is named for a...

, New South Wales
New South Wales
New South Wales is a state of :Australia, located in the east of the country. It is bordered by Queensland, Victoria and South Australia to the north, south and west respectively. To the east, the state is bordered by the Tasman Sea, which forms part of the Pacific Ocean. New South Wales...

 (a suburb 20 km to Cronulla
Cronulla, New South Wales
Cronulla is a beachside suburb, in southern Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Cronulla is located 26 kilometres south of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of Sutherland Shire....

’s north–west) gathered together at the local Punchbowl Park. Additional groups, armed with baseball bats, also gathered at The Promenade and Arncliffe Park. Between 20:30 and 21:00 the groups formed a convoy
Convoy
A convoy is a group of vehicles, typically motor vehicles or ships, traveling together for mutual support and protection. Often, a convoy is organized with armed defensive support, though it may also be used in a non-military sense, for example when driving through remote areas.-Age of Sail:Naval...

 of “more than 40 cars” and drove down to the beaches “to get revenge” with many of the cars ending up in Maroubra. At 22:45 police were ordered “not to approach convoys of men of Middle Eastern appearance” however car details and registration
Vehicle registration plate
A vehicle registration plate is a metal or plastic plate attached to a motor vehicle or trailer for official identification purposes. The registration identifier is a numeric or alphanumeric code that uniquely identifies the vehicle within the issuing region's database...

 details were to be recorded. A local of Maroubra reported that each of the cars that arrived was “full, you know had four passengers” The convoy, of 100 to 200 people, was reportedly armed with bars and bats, knives, machete
Machete
The machete is a large cleaver-like cutting tool. The blade is typically long and usually under thick. In the English language, an equivalent term is matchet, though it is less commonly known...

s and guns. The group assaulted several people, knocking one unconscious and threatening another with rape. They also damaged between 60 and 100 cars, setting at least one on fire. Police in riot gear
Riot control
Riot control refers to the measures used by police, military, or other security forces to control, disperse, and arrest civilians who are involved in a riot, demonstration, or protest. Law enforcement officers or soldiers have long used non-lethal weapons such as batons and whips to disperse crowds...

 moved to contain the violence and the crowds responded by throwing bricks and glass. Residents reported that in some streets “every car” had had their windows smashed, with glass covering the streets. Police also confiscated 40 iron bars and arrested 14 people.

Attacks

A 26-year–old mechanic dubbed “Dan” was stabbed in the back three times and twice in the thigh with a 9.8 centimetre blade at approximately 22:25. The incident occurred outside Woolooware golf club
Golf club
A golf club is used to hit a golf ball in a game of golf. Each club is composed of a shaft with a grip and a clubhead. Woods are mainly used for long-distance fairway or tee shots; irons, the most versatile class, are used for a variety of shots; Hybrids that combine design elements of woods and...

 when two cars carrying a group of males “described as being of Mediterranean or Middle Eastern appearance” approached the man and his friends. Dan and his friends attempted to flee from the group who were shouting “Get the Aussie dogs ... get the Aussie sluts”, Dan was knocked to the ground and was repeatedly kicked in the head. The attack ended when the 9.8 centimetre knife snapped off in the victim's back. He was taken to hospital in a serious condition. The blade had narrowly missed his spine and lungs.

Jake Schofield was attacked by a group of four men of “Middle Eastern appearance”, the men beat Schofield repeatedly, stabbing him twice and hitting him with a piece of concrete before stealing his wallet and keys. The attack left him with a fractured eye socket and fractured nose.

Aftermath

Additional smaller riots occurred on the following nights in the suburbs of Marouba and Brighton-le-Sands
Brighton-Le-Sands, New South Wales
Brighton-Le-Sands , is a suburb in southern Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Brighton-Le-Sands is located 13 kilometres south of the Sydney central business district, on the western shore of Botany Bay...

 as well as Cronulla. Similar text messages had also turned up in other states including Queensland
Queensland
Queensland is a state of Australia, occupying the north-eastern section of the mainland continent. It is bordered by the Northern Territory, South Australia and New South Wales to the west, south-west and south respectively. To the east, Queensland is bordered by the Coral Sea and Pacific Ocean...

,. Victoria
Victoria (Australia)
Victoria is the second most populous state in Australia. Geographically the smallest mainland state, Victoria is bordered by New South Wales, South Australia, and Tasmania on Boundary Islet to the north, west and south respectively....

 and Western Australia
Western Australia
Western Australia is a state of Australia, occupying the entire western third of the Australian continent. It is bounded by the Indian Ocean to the north and west, the Great Australian Bight and Indian Ocean to the south, the Northern Territory to the north-east and South Australia to the south-east...

.

On December 12 rioters had written various Anti-Australian sentiment
Anti-Australian sentiment
Anti-Australian sentiment, Australophobia, or Anti-Australianism, is a hostility towards or disapproval of the culture, history, and/or people of Australia...

s including; “Aussi to Die”, “Intifada”, “It’s war”, “Sunday cowards die, Soldiers rize”, “Never rest assie dog”, “Yous came by chains u convict dogs”, and “We fear no ozy pigs” before continuing to destroy cars and local shops. Approximately 2000 people gathered inside Lakemba Mosque
Lakemba Mosque
Lakemba Mosque, is one of the largest mosques in Australia. It is located in the suburb of Lakemba, New South Wales and is used mostly by Lebanese Australians. The construction of the mosque was completed in 1977...

 with another 800 gathered outside the evening after the riot. Sheikh
Sheikh
Not to be confused with sikhSheikh — also spelled Sheik or Shaikh, or transliterated as Shaykh — is an honorific in the Arabic language that literally means "elder" and carries the meaning "leader and/or governor"...

 Shady Suleiman spoke to the crowd and called for calm. However some were armed with Glock pistol
Glock pistol
The Glock pistol, sometimes referred to by the manufacturer as Glock "Safe Action" Pistol, is a series of semi-automatic pistols designed and produced by Glock Ges.m.b.H., located in Deutsch-Wagram, Austria. The company's founder, engineer Gaston Glock, had no experience with firearm design or...

s which they displayed to the media. At least some of the people gathered were reported to have planned to go on to Maroubra, however the police blocked roads leading into Maroubra and 20 police cars surrounded the mosque. The Uniting Church in Auburn
Auburn, New South Wales
Auburn is a suburb in western Sydney, in the state of New South Wales Australia. Auburn is located 19 kilometres west of the Sydney central business district and is the administrative centre of the local government area of Auburn Council.-History:...

, a predominantly Tonga
Tonga
Tonga, officially the Kingdom of Tonga , is a state and an archipelago in the South Pacific Ocean, comprising 176 islands scattered over of ocean in the South Pacific...

n congregation, was burned and those attending christmas carol
Christmas carol
A Christmas carol is a carol whose lyrics are on the theme of Christmas or the winter season in general and which are traditionally sung in the period before Christmas.-History:...

s were abused and threatened. More than 30 Molotov cocktail
Molotov cocktail
The Molotov cocktail, also known as the petrol bomb, gasoline bomb, Molotov bomb, fire bottle, fire bomb, or simply Molotov, is a generic name used for a variety of improvised incendiary weapons...

s were also confiscated by police.

800 police officers formed Operation Seta and were on patrol on the following nights, with up to 450 police officers blockading Cronulla on the night of Tuesday 13 December and an additional 11 people were arrested; five were arrested in relation to a replica
Replica
A replica is a copy closely resembling the original concerning its shape and appearance. An inverted replica complements the original by filling its gaps. It can be a copy used for historical purposes, such as being placed in a museum. Sometimes the original never existed. For example, Difference...

 pistol and six were arrested for property damage. An additional seven people were injured including another police officer. A husband and wife were taken to hospital after the wife was struck in the head and the husband tried to defend her. Another man was struck by a baseball bat
Baseball bat
A baseball bat is a smooth wooden or metal club used in the game of baseball to hit the ball after the ball is thrown by the pitcher. It is no more than 2.75 inches in diameter at the thickest part and no more than 42 inches in length. It typically weighs no more than 33 ounces , but it...

 and suffered a fractured forearm.

Criminal Prosecutions

Ali Osman, 18, was charged with affray and assault occasioning actual bodily harm for the original attacks on the volunteer lifesavers on 4 December 2005 and was given 300 hours of community service for the assault and 200 hours for affray though they would be served concurrently. Osman was the only person charged over the attack. Yahya Jamal Serhan was arrested over the stabbing of “Dan” on December 12 and charged with affray
Affray
In many legal jurisdictions related to English common law, affray is a public order offence consisting of the fighting of two or more persons in a public place to the terror of ordinary people...

 and maliciously inflicting grievous bodily harm
Grievous bodily harm
Grievous bodily harm is a term of art used in English criminal law which has become synonymous with the offences that are created by sections 18 and 20 of the Offences against the Person Act 1861....

 and was sentenced to 13 months jail but was immediately released after having already spent nine months in custody awaiting trial. Dan was angered and disappointed by the sentence “I’ve got no feeling on the left hand side of my back where the knife broke off.” A second person, a 17-year–old, was also questioned by police.

Marcus Kapitza, 28, was jailed for 12 months after pleading guilty to one charge of riot. On the day of the riot Kapitza wore a singlet with the words “Mohammed
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

 was a camel-raping faggot.” He was also involved in the attack at the train station shouting “Fuck off! Fuck off the Lebs.” Brent Lohman, 19, was also charged over the train station assault was sentenced to 11 months in jail.

Two of the youths who attacked Jake Schofield turned themselves in to police and were charged with armed robbery, wounding, malicious wounding with intent, affray and assault occasioning actual bodily harm. Two others, Wael Tahan and Mahmoud Eid, had been arrested on the night of the attack but were released without charge before being rearrested and charged with robbery in company, malicious wounding causing grievous bodily harm and affray.

Brett Andrew King appeared in court in January 2006 charged with sending two text messages 42 times for a retaliatory riot on Sunday 18 December 2005. Jeffrey Ismail was also charged with sending two text messages under the pseudonym
Pseudonym
A pseudonym is a name that a person assumes for a particular purpose and that differs from his or her original orthonym...

 of John Gotti
John Gotti
John Joseph Gotti, Jr was an American mobster who became the Boss of the Gambino crime family in New York City. Gotti grew up in poverty. He and his brothers turned to a life of crime at an early age...

.

A 16 year old Lebanese immigrant, Ali Ammar, was arrested and jailed for seven months for stealing an Australian flag from the Brighton-le-Sands RSL
Returned and Services League of Australia
The Returned and Services League of Australia is a support organisation for men and women who have served or are serving in the Australian Defence Force ....

 club. Following his release, Ammar appeared on television to present an official apology and in 2007 he was sponsored by the RSL to walk the Kokoda track
Kokoda Track
The Kokoda Trail or Track is a single-file foot thoroughfare that runs overland — in a straight line — through the Owen Stanley Range in Papua New Guinea...

 after the State President of the NSW RSL met him at a Reconciliation Conference.

Strike Force Enoggera

Strike Force Enoggera was established on 13 December 2005, tasked with investigating the riots. The strike force initially consisted of 28 members under the command of Superintendent
Superintendent (police)
Superintendent , often shortened to "super", is a rank in British police services and in most English-speaking Commonwealth nations. In many Commonwealth countries the full version is superintendent of police...

 Dennis Bray, but was later increased to 100 officers on 20 January 2006. During a radio interview NSW Police Commissioner Moroney claimed to have no video footage of the retaliatory attacks on 11 December, however it was later revealed that the police had had a video for five weeks, leading Moroney to sack Bray. Bray was later reinstated to a lesser role, having been replaced by Detective Superintendent Ken Mckay.

By July 19, 2006 police had laid 285 charges against 104 people, 51 having been arrested as a result of the original Cronulla riot and 53 arrested from the retaliation riots. These persons had been charged with, amongst other things: malicious damage, possession or use of a prohibited weapon, assaulting police, rioting, resisting arrest, threatening violence and affray.

Media and community responses

Brian Wilshire
Brian Wilshire
Brian Wilshire is a radio DJ for 2GB. His show is currently the longest-running program in the city, and is also the highest rating at night, with a 23.9% audience share...

, a 2GB radio host, stated the following weekend on air: “Many of them have parents who are first cousin
Cousin
In kinship terminology, a cousin is a relative with whom one shares one or more common ancestors. The term is rarely used when referring to a relative in one's immediate family where there is a more specific term . The term "blood relative" can be used synonymously and establishes the existence of...

s whose parents are first cousins, the result of this inbreeding—the result of which is uneducationable people ... and very low IQ
Intelligence quotient
An intelligence quotient, or IQ, is a score derived from one of several different standardized tests designed to assess intelligence. When modern IQ tests are constructed, the mean score within an age group is set to 100 and the standard deviation to 15...

”, comments he later apologized for.

An anti-racism rally, attended by 2000 people, was held in Bourke Street, Melbourne.

Writing a year after the riots, novelist Hsu-Ming Teo was worried that Australian multiculturalism
Multiculturalism in Australia
Multiculturalism in Australia has a special cultural status.Many similar policies were put in place, for example the formation of the Special Broadcasting Service...

 was being eroded. Stating that multiculturalism was one of Australia’s defining features that allowed it to broker differences with its geographical neighbours, and that it was almost unique in its ethnic and cultural origins, she suggested that in recent years multiculturalism had begun to be derided with politicians calling for one homogeneous non-divisible Australian culture citing, amongst others, the “popularity and success” of Pauline Hanson
Pauline Hanson
Pauline Lee Hanson is an Australian politician and former leader of Pauline Hanson's One Nation, a political party with a populist and anti-multiculturalism platform...

.

Government Responses

The New South Wales parliament
Government of New South Wales
The form of the Government of New South Wales is prescribed in its Constitution, which dates from 1856, although it has been amended many times since then...

 convened on December 15 to pass laws giving police new powers including: the ability to seize cars and mobile phones for up to seven days, close licensed premises and prohibit bringing alcohol into lock–down zones. A new offence of “assault during a public disorder” was also introduced and both rioting and affray had their minimum sentences increased. NSW Premier Morris Iemma
Morris Iemma
Morris Iemma , is a former Australian politician and 40th Premier of New South Wales, succeeding Bob Carr after he resigned on 3 August 2005. Iemma led the Australian Labor Party to victory in the 2007 election before resigning as Premier on 5 September 2008, and as a Member of Parliament on 19...

 called the attacks “disgusting, cowardly behaviour” and condemned the rioters. He also called on the community leaders to use “their influence to get the hot heads to cool it.”

NSW Police Commissioner Ken Moroney
Ken Moroney
Kennneth Edward Moroney AO APM was the Commissioner of the New South Wales Police Force in New South Wales, Australia from 2002 until 2007.- Personal life :...

 called the riots “absolutely totally un-Australian”, saying that “I saw, in my 40 years of police service, some of the most disgraceful behaviour and conduct by adults that I’d ever seen.” NSW Opposition leader Peter Debnam called it “a real disgrace” and called for a tougher police response. Australian Prime Minister John Howard
John Howard
John Winston Howard AC, SSI, was the 25th Prime Minister of Australia, from 11 March 1996 to 3 December 2007. He was the second-longest serving Australian Prime Minister after Sir Robert Menzies....

 condemned the violence describing it as “sickening and deplorable” but denied any racial undertones, saying the events were primarily an issue of law and order — a view echoed by the Treasurer Peter Costello
Peter Costello
Peter Howard Costello AC is an Australian politician and lawyer who served as the Treasurer in the Australian government from 1996 to 2007. He is the longest-serving Treasurer in Australian history. Costello was a Member of the Australian House of Representatives from 1990 to 2009, representing...

, who described the Sydney riots as "an example of hoodlums who got out of control.” Opposition Leader Kim Beazley
Kim Beazley
In the October 1998 election, Labor polled a majority of the two-party vote and received the largest swing to a first-term opposition since 1934. However, due to the uneven nature of the swing, Labor came up eight seats short of making Beazley Prime Minister....

 described the attacks as “simply criminal behaviour, that’s all there is to it”.

Economic Impacts

Many of the small business
Small business
A small business is a business that is privately owned and operated, with a small number of employees and relatively low volume of sales. Small businesses are normally privately owned corporations, partnerships, or sole proprietorships...

es in and around Terrigal
Terrigal, New South Wales
Terrigal is a major coastal suburb of the Central Coast region of New South Wales, Australia, located east of Gosford on the Pacific Ocean. It is part of the City of Gosford local government area....

 on the New South Wales
New South Wales
New South Wales is a state of :Australia, located in the east of the country. It is bordered by Queensland, Victoria and South Australia to the north, south and west respectively. To the east, the state is bordered by the Tasman Sea, which forms part of the Pacific Ocean. New South Wales...

 Central Coast reported that a police lockdown of the beach caused business to drop to 10% of normal levels on a Saturday, with only 25% of Christmas shopping crowds turning up on the Sunday. Tourism and Hospitality workers in the area were laid off or had their hours cut. The NSW state government announced an A$
Australian dollar
The Australian dollar is the currency of the Commonwealth of Australia, including Christmas Island, Cocos Islands, and Norfolk Island, as well as the independent Pacific Island states of Kiribati, Nauru and Tuvalu...

250,000 tourism campaign after authorities in Great Britain
Great Britain
Great Britain or Britain is an island situated to the northwest of Continental Europe. It is the ninth largest island in the world, and the largest European island, as well as the largest of the British Isles...

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 and Indonesia
Indonesia
Indonesia , officially the Republic of Indonesia , is a country in Southeast Asia and Oceania. Indonesia is an archipelago comprising approximately 13,000 islands. It has 33 provinces with over 238 million people, and is the world's fourth most populous country. Indonesia is a republic, with an...

 issued travel warnings to their citizens.

See also

  • Foreign relations of Australia
    Foreign relations of Australia
    The foreign relations of Australia have spanned from the country's time as Dominion and later Realm of the Commonwealth to become steadfastly allied with New Zealand through long-standing ANZAC ties dating back to the early 1900s, and the United States throughout the Cold War, to its engagement...

  • Racial violence in Australia
    Racial violence in Australia
    Racial violence in Australia is evident through various past and more recent events. Hate crimes and racial violence are not a new concept...

  • List of riots
    • In Australia:
      • Lambing Flat riots
        Lambing Flat riots
        The Lambing Flat riots were a series of violent anti-Chinese demonstrations that took place in the Burrangong region, in New South Wales, Australia...

         (1860–1861)
      • Battle of Brisbane
        Battle of Brisbane
        The "Battle of Brisbane" was violence between United States military personnel on one side and Australian servicemen and civilians on the other, in Brisbane, Australia on 26–27 November 1942, during World War II. Australia and the US were Allies at the time...

        – riots between Australian and American soldiers in 1942
      • 2004 Redfern riots
        2004 Redfern riots
        The Redfern Riots on the evening of Saturday 14 February 2004 was an event in the inner Sydney suburb of Redfern sparked by the death of Thomas 'TJ' Hickey, a 17 year old Indigenous Australian....

      • 2005 Macquarie Fields riots
        2005 Macquarie Fields riots
        The Macquarie Fields riots were a series of disturbances across southwest Sydney in February 2005 which were referred to as a riot by both the Parliament of New South Wales and the media....

    • Other:
      • 2005 civil unrest in France
        2005 civil unrest in France
        The 2005 civil unrest in France of October and November was a series of riots by mostly Muslim North African youths in Paris and other French cities, involving mainly the burning of cars and public buildings at night starting on 27 October 2005 in Clichy-sous-Bois...

      • Mass racial violence in the United States
        Mass racial violence in the United States
        Mass racial violence, also called race riots can include such disparate events as:* attacks on Irish Catholics, the Chinese and other immigrants in the 19th century....


External links

  • Mobs rampage in CronullaThe Sydney Morning Herald's photo gallery of the 11 December 2005 riots.
  • Cronulla Riot – Photographs taken by Warren Hudson on 10 December 2005.
  • “The 'Young Muslim Man' in Australian Public Discourse” .pdf by Kiran Grewal, Transforming Cultures eJournal, Vol.2, No.1, November 2007
  • Conversation after Cronulla – a Lebanese Australian
    Lebanese Australian
    A Lebanese Australian is an Australian citizen or permanent resident of Lebanese descent. The community is multi-religious, and includes a Christian, mostly Maronite Catholic, majority, as well as a large Muslim minority of both the Shia and Sunni branches of Islam, and various other Christian and...

    's reflection on the background and aftermath to the riots
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