Five suspects were arrested Saturday after Australian Federal Police conducted several anti- terrorism operations across the second largest city of Melbourne in the morning.
According to the Acting Deputy Commissioner Neil Gaughan, 200 policemen conducted operations at 4 a.m. local time across the south eastern suburbs. Two 18-year-old men from Hallam and Hampton Park, were alleged to plan a terrorist attack on Anzac Day in Melbourne next Saturday, which commemorates Australia’s involvement in the first world war.
One of the suspects named Sevdet Besim later appeared in Melbourne Magistrates Court and was charged of plotting the attack against police.
The third one was arrested due to weapon offense and the rest two are in custody.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott has urged Australians not to be deterred by the plots and turn up to the Anzac Day commemorations.
“People should turn up at Anzac Day events in the largest possible numbers…You can be confident that we are doing everything that we humanly can to keep people as safe as anyone can be,” said Abbott in Sydney.
“The best thing we can do to counter terrorism is to lead normal lives,” he added.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the security on Anzac Day would be boosted due to the threat.
In the past months, Australia has stepped up its counter- terrorism strategy and operations in the wake of threats posed by Islamic State agent hidden in the country.
The law enforcement authorities have foiled several terror- related threats in Sydney and Melbourne since last September.
A Terror suspect named Numan Haider was shot and killed by police in September, 2014, after stabbing officers at a police station in southeastern Melbourne. Enditem