Hazmat teams respond to ‘suspicious packages’ at multiple consulates across Australia (VIDEO)
While authorities have yet to name the specific targets, the United States and British diplomatic offices are among a list of the diplomatic missions in Melbourne that were evacuated after reports of the suspicious packages surfaced. Swiss, German, Korean, Greek, Italian, Indian, Pakistani and Egyptian consulates were also reportedly targeted.
Emergency services, including Hazmat teams, are currently responding to the incidents. At least 18 Hazardous Materials Response units have been deployed across Melbourne, Nine News Australia said in their latest report, noting that at least 13 consulates received suspicious packages that may contain "asbestos."
MFB is assisting the Australian Federal Police at a number of incidents at embassies across Melbourne. Further information will be provided by the AFP when it becomes available.— MFB (@MFB_NEWS) January 9, 2019
"Police and emergency services have responded to suspicious packages to embassies and consulates in ACT & VIC," Australian Federal Police said on Twitter, adding that the contents of the parcels are being "examined" by emergency services. "The circumstances are being investigated," the statement added.
At least ten “Hazardous Material” alerts were listed on the Emergency Victoria website within half an hour of the first report of a suspicious package, just before 2:00 pm local time.
#BREAKING - major operation underway in Melbourne. This is the map from Vic Emergency website. Hazardous material in a number of foreign consulates in St Kilda rd and the city. Emergency services attending. Fire crews in Collins St @SkyNewsAustpic.twitter.com/GnAoB64bIo— Ahron Young (@AhronYoung) January 9, 2019
BREAKING: @MFB_NEWS firefighters & Aus Federal Police on scene at the New Zealand embassy in Melbourne, investigating a suspicious package. Understand the US, Indian, UK, German & Swiss consulates may also be affected. Authorities yet to comment. @7NewsMelbourne pic.twitter.com/v6TG1afeYj— Kristy Mayr (@KristyMayr7) January 9, 2019
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