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Terrorist Plot to Bring Down Airplane Foiled, Airport Security Increased: Australian PM

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| July 30 , 2017 , 13:04 IST

Police have disrupted a suspected terrorist plot to bring down an airplane in Australia and increased security measures at all major international and domestic terminals across the country, Australia Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbill said on Sunday.

"I can report last night that there has been a major joint counter terrorism operation to disrupt a terrorist plot to bring down an airplane," Turnbull said to media.

"The operation is continuing," he added.

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So far 4 men have been arrested from various Sydney suburbs in connection with the terrorist plot.

The operation was launched by the Australian Federal Police, the New South Wales state police and the country's main spy agency the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation.

According to Justice Minister Michael Keenan the Airplane threat was the 13th significant threat disrupted by police since the terrorist threat level in Australia was elevated in 2014.

"In recent days, law enforcement has become aware of information that suggested some people in Sydney were planning to commit a terrorist attack using an improvised device," Australian Federal Police Commissioner Andrew Colivn said.

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"We are investigating information indicating the aviation industry was potentially a target of that attack," he added.

PM Turnbull has advised travelers in Australia to arrive at airports earlier than usual two hours before departure so as to allow sufficient time for extra security screening.

"The primary threat to Australia still remains lone actors, but the events overnight remind us that there is still the ability for people to have sophisticated plots and sophisticated attacks still remain a real threat," Justice Minister Keenan said.

"In light of this information, it's very important that everyone in Australia remains vigilant."