WHILE Muslim leaders in Melbourne supported the anti-terrorism raids, a fringe group called a news conference in Sydney where it repeatedly refused to condone the police action or condemn the killing of the US ambassador and other diplomats in Libya.

''If you light fires overseas, flares will come,'' said the media representative for Hizb ut-Tahrir Australia, Uthman Badar.

Mr Badar said he was not interested in ''superficial rhetoric'' about victims because that ignored the root cause of terrorism: Western aggression against Muslims.

He acknowledged that police had a right to protect Australia's security - ''if that makes you happy'' - but he insisted this missed the point. To stop terrorism, he said, we must address the provocation, which included Australia's military actions.

Mr Badar said of the YouTube video that mocked Allah and reportedly provoked the US embassy killings in Libya: ''Insulting the prophet will not be tolerated. Those who justify this in the name of freedom of expression put themselves offside with 2 billion Muslims around the world.

''They should hold themselves accountable for the consequences that this brings.''

Hizb ut-Tahrir originally called the news conference to promote a Muslim convention in Sydney on Sunday.