A sniper in the Channel 7 building watching the Lindt Chocolate Cafe in Martin Place just moments before gunman Man Haron Monis kills a hostage.
A sniper in the Channel 7 building watching the Lindt Chocolate Cafe in Martin Place just moments before gunman Man Haron Monis kills a hostage.

Sydney siege review to be released before March

THE joint federal and New South Wales governments' review of the Martin Place siege will be released before the end of the month.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott, during a condolence motion in parliament yesterday, described the incident as "the act of terror that we hoped would never occur in this country".

Katrina Dawson, 38, and Tori Johnson, 34, died during the 17-hour siege in the Lindt Cafe last December.

Mr Abbott said he wanted to assure all Australians, and particularly Ms Dawson's and Mr Johnson's families, that both governments were "determined to learn from what happened".

He said while no one could promise an act of terror would never occur again, the joint federal-state review and NSW coronial inquiry would identify "what we can do to further protect our people and our country".

The coronial inquest revealed late last month that Ms Dawson was killed by fragments of a bullet or bullets fired by police as they stormed the cafe after Mr Johnson was killed, "execution-style".

Opposition leader Bill Shorten also spoke on the condolence motion for the two victims, saying "it could have been the families of any Australians in there that morning".

The speeches followed television reports on the siege. Cafe employee Jarrod Hoffman said he considered using a Stanley knife to overpower Monis.

"I thought: 'Do I stab him? What if I miss? What are the consequences of that? Who is he going to shoot? He could kill us all," he told 60 Minutes. The coronial inquest is ongoing, but no hearings were scheduled this week.


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