Australia's Terror Problem: A Timeline
The Sydney gunman's motives are unclear but appear to be politically motivated, leaving experts wondering whether there's an ISIS connection.By Elizabeth Hagedorn | December 15, 2014
Australian officials won't say if the hostage crisis Monday was ISIS-related.
Even though the gunman reportedly forced captives to display a flag similar to the one used by ISIS. (Video via BBC)
At the very least, the gunman seems to be politically motivated. He reportedly demanded a meeting with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who has been a major backer of the U.S.-led campaign against ISIS. Aware of possible retaliation, Australia has beefed up its national security apparatus in recent months, rolling out a series of counterterrorism laws in August aimed at preventing Australians from joining up with militant groups.