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PM denounces terrorism in New Year message

AAP logoAAP 31/12/2016

Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull has used his 2017 New Year message to warn terrorists and extremists they will not succeed in dividing Australians.

Mr Turnbull said conflict around the world should make all Australians grateful and proud of its harmonious, peaceful and multicultural society.

But he also warned "we must never take it for granted" and pointed to recent arrests in Sydney and Melbourne linked to terror plots which he says were designed to undermine the Australian way of life.

"Those who have sought to divide us have failed just as those who try to divide us in the future will fail," he said.

""We will continue to root out Islamist terrorists and violent extremists and put them behind bars, just as our Defence Force will continue to combat and destroy them in Syria and Iraq."

Mr Turnbull said national and economic security would again be his priority in 2017, and wished everyone a year filled with peace, happiness and love.

In his New Year message, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten reflected on the difficulties Australians faced in 2016, including violence against women and unemployment.

"As a nation, we witnessed unhappiness far too often," he said.

The Labor leader promised to stand up for the things that matter to ordinary Australians.

"As we look ahead to the challenges of 2017, it is clear that too many people are feeling left out and left behind," Mr Shorten said.

"We'll keep working hard to build a strong economy that delivers for all Australians."

Mr Shorten says he hopes 2017 will be filled with joy, good health and success for everyone.

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