February 21, 2016 / 11:15 AM / 2 years ago

Australia issues security alert for Kuala Lumpur

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - The Australian government warned on Sunday that terrorists may be planning attacks in and around the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.

A Malaysian soldier patrols in front of the Petronas towers at the venue of the 27th ASEAN summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, November 21, 2015. REUTERS/Jorge Silva

Malaysia has been on high alert since a bomb and gun attack in Indonesia’s capital in January, which was claimed by the Islamic State militant group. Malaysia had also arrested a suspected militant who confessed to be planning an attack in the country.

“Terrorists may be planning attacks in and around Kuala Lumpur. Attacks could be indiscriminate and may target Western interests or locations frequented by Westerners,” read a travel advisory post on the Australian government website.

It also recommended that Australians avoid travel to the coastal region of eastern Sabah, where the beaches and islands are popular with foreign tourists and diving enthusiasts.

Malaysia’s Foreign Ministry said it noted the travel advisories and would keep foreign missions informed on security developments.

“We also acknowledge the fact that foreign missions are at liberty to provide their own assessment of the security situation in their host countries albeit the fact that it may not be accurate or gives a true reflection of the situation,” a ministry spokesperson said.

Reporting by Emily Chow and Rozanna Latiff; Editing by Alison Williams

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