Homeland Security says it is 'closely following' Australia terror plot

People crowd a terminal at Sydney's domestic airport as passengers are subjected to increased security in Sydney Australia Monday

The government has moved to bolster security at major Australian airports in the wake of an unprecedented terrorist plot on Australian soil. Four men, who were identified as Khaled Merhi, Abdul Merhi, Khaled Khayat and Mahmoud Khayat, were arrested.

"I want to thank the travelling public for their forbearance, having to get to the airport earlier and wait longer to get through security", Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on ABC Radio in Perth this morning.

Qantas and Virgin issued travel alerts to passengers to arrive at the airport two hours before domestic flights and three hours before global flights and to "limit the amount of carry-on and checked baggage".

Turnbull declined to say whether the group was guided by someone overseas.

The ramped up security procedures were put in place after four men were arrested at the weekend in raids conducted across several Sydney suburbs.

Federal and State Police officers are seen at a crime scene in Surry Hills, Sydney, New South Wales (NSW), Australia, July 30, 2017.

The foiled Australian terrorist plot targeting an airline, believed to be inspired by ISIS, has gotten the attention of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

"You should infer that we think this was credible and there was an intention, and there was quite possibly a capability as well".

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The precautions include additional checks of cabin and checked baggage at Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Darwin, Hobart, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra, Cairns and the Gold Coast.

The four individuals in custody have not been charged and Mr Colvin said police would request a magistrate extend their holding period, noting terrorism laws allow police to hold the men for up to week.

He said additional security measures were implemented at Sydney Airport earlier in the week, and that more airfields had increased security overnight. They were allegedly plotting to blow up an aeroplane.

Australia's terrorism threat level hasn't been changed following the raids.

"We are closely following the terrorism investigation in Australia and assisting our partners", DHS said in a statement.

Mr Turnbull said the arrangements could remain for some time.

The terror threat has caused fear among Australians, and an aviation security expert said Australia lacks the proper equipment for their security measures, reports News AU.

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