ACT News

No direct threat to Canberra as police raise terror threat level to high

The ACT's police chief said there wasn't a specific threat to Canberra, as the national law enforcement agency increased he likelihood of a terrorist attack on Australia's police to "high".

The Australian Federal Police raised the threat level in response to fresh intelligence and in line with national terrorist alert levels on Tuesday.

ACT Chief Police Officer Rudi Lammers said force members would continue to maintain a visible presence around the capital, although Canberrans probably wouldn't notice any increase in activity.

He said factors that led the federal government to act on Australian Security Intelligence Organisation advice and boost the alert in September last year were still present. 

"There is no specific threat to the ACT. However, ACT Policing and the broader AFP are well resourced to respond quickly and effectively to any incident.

"Police and security agencies continually assess threat levels through sharing of intelligence and adjust security measures as appropriate."

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Chief Police Officer Lammers said current protection measures in place at national landmarks and embassies was adequate and ACT police could use AFP resources to respond to threats. 

He would not be drawn on whether security at police stations throughout the territory had been increased in response to the heightened alert, saying it was not appropriate to comment on specific security details related to staff or infrastructure.

"Following the raising of the National Terrorism Public Alert level in September 2014, ACT Policing reviewed its security procedures and advised its staff accordingly."

Chief Police Officer Lammers said while police were often placed in harm's way as first responders to emergencies, officers were well trained and would be well equipped to handle any dangerous situation.

As law enforcement is an integral part in Australia's counter-terrorism effort and police are the most visible and accessible, the security of ACT Policing members is paramount and we will continue to assess and review its security procedures and systems to ensure this."

He urged members of the public to remain vigilant and to report suspicious behaviour to the national security hotline.

"The community should not be concerned and while it is important that the public is aware of the increased threat, people should continue to got about their lives as normal."

The National Security Hotline is 1800 1234 00 and more information is available at nationalsecurity.gov.au

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