Israel foiled Australia 'plane terror plot' | 2018-02-22 |

Israel foiled Australia 'plane terror plot'

Sun Online Desk     22nd February, 2018 11:57:49 printer

Israel foiled Australia 'plane terror plot'


Israel helped avert an alleged terror plot in Australia to bring down a plane last year, both nations have confirmed.


Last July, Australian police charged two brothers over an alleged plan to blow up an Etihad Airways flight travelling from Sydney to Abu Dhabi.


In a speech in Jerusalem on Wednesday, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu credited his nation's intelligence agencies with preventing "an unimaginable slaughter".


Authorities have said the alleged plot was linked to the Islamic State group.


At the time, Australian police said a home-made bomb, hidden inside a meat-grinder, was due to be carried on to a flight on 15 July but did not make it past security after the plan was aborted for an unknown reason.


Police said that when the bomb plot failed, the two suspects started on a second plot which involved creating an improvised chemical device designed to release hydrogen sulphide, or "rotten egg gas".


Lebanese-Australian brothers Khaled Khayat, 49, and Mahmoud Khayat, 32, were later arrested in Sydney and charged with "preparing for, or planning, a terrorist attack".


The AFP news agency said Israel did not reveal which flight was at the centre of its warning.


Australian Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton said Israel was "directly" involved in uncovering the alleged plot.


The alleged plot was among the most sophisticated ever attempted in Australia, police have said.


Police said the second alleged plan - involving the use of gas - was not close to fruition.