Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull speaks during a media conference announcing new anti-terrorism laws in Sydney, Australia, July 25, 2016.
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull speaks during a media conference. Reuters/AAP/Dan Himbrechts

New South Wales Police will soon have a shoot-to-kill power against terrorists. Premier Gladys Berejiklian declared on Friday that the government has “accepted and supported” Coroner Michael’s recommendation for the government to consider legislative changes to ensure the authorities have protections to deal with terrorist cases in a manner that prioritises public safety.

Berejiklian announced the legislation would be launched within a fortnight to guarantee certainty to the police who need to utilise lethal forces against terrorists. She said it is essential for police to have power to use force if needed to keep the public safe from terrorists.

In a statement, Berejiklian cited the attack in Melbourne and the “evil acts in London” as reasons to be “ever-vigilant to the emerging and evolving risks of terrorism.” She added the NSW will continue to have the toughest counter-terror laws in Australia, reports.

On Tuesday, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull confirmed, after several reports, that authorities were treating a fatal siege in the southern city of Melbourne as an "act of terrorism.” The Islamic State group had also claimed responsibility for the attack, saying the gunman was one of its fighters.

Turnbull described the attack as cowardly. "It is a terrorist attack and it underlines the need for us to be constantly vigilant, never to be deterred, always defiant, in the face of Islamist terrorism," he said.

The prime minister also questioned how gunman Yacqub Khayre, who killed one man and injured three police, was out on parole. During a press conference in Canberra, he told reporters that Khayre has been charged with a terrorist offence and had been acquitted.

Khayre shot Chinese-born Kai “Nick” Hao. The former also held a hostage before being killed in a hail of bullets in suburban Brighton on Monday night.

The Melbourne incident came after a terror attack in London that killed eight people, including two Australian women, South Australian nurse Kirsty Boden and Sara Zelenak from Brisbane. Three men drove onto pedestrians on London Bridge and went on a stabbing riot in Borough Market.

Concerns regarding terror responses and parole are likely to be priorities at the COAG meeting of state and territory leaders in Hobart on Friday. He recognised how the country is facing a growing threat from Islamist terrorism, but authorities are committed to defeating threats.

Turnbull maintained Australia would continue to defy and defeat terrorism. The country’s terror threat level is currently at “probable.”

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