Extra security for Boxing Day Test after terror-related arrests

first_imgPolice presence will be increased around the MCG for the Boxing Day Test after a series of terror-related arrests in Melbourne on Thursday night.Seven people were arrested over what Victoria’s Police chief commissioner Graham Ashton said was a potential multi-mode attack at Federation Square, Flinders Street Station and St Paul’s Cathedral, believed to be planned for Christmas Day.Although there has been no suggestion of the Boxing Day Test being targeted, Mr Ashton said police presence would be heightened around the cricket, as it would at other major events in Victoria during the holiday period.“We’ll see a lot of additional police presence in the CBD particularly, through the Christmas period, right through the new year period,” he said. “We’ve added additional layers of security to the cricket Boxing Day Test. These are precautionary measures but it’s important the community is reassured that we are putting these additional resources in place.“I took the opportunity to talk to Cricket Australia this morning and had a discussion with them, informing them that we will have an increased police presence for the cricket. But we are doing the planning across the state. So all of those significant events that will be occurring across the state will be complemented by additional police during this period.“I do stress that there’s no intel, there’s no information suggesting a threat at this time to any of those events. However, we’re just making sure that we’re taking those extra precautions given what we’ve been dealing with over the last couple of weeks in relation to this.”Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said: “Our security team is in contact with the relevant authorities to ensure we have the appropriate level of security at the Boxing Day Test and other cricket matches being held around the country.“The safety and security of our fans, players and officials attending any cricket match is our number one priority. We applaud Victoria Police for their efforts this morning in neutralising the threat and we will continue to work with the relevant authorities to ensure the highest security standards and protocols are maintained.”A “ring of steel” was erected around the MCG last summer as a security measure, with full bag and body searches conducted at the fence before fans were allowed inside the perimeter. Although it was decided not to put the fence in place again this year, the same searches will again take place as patrons enter the MCG proper.last_img

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