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Monday 22

October, 2018 4:42 PM



Regional and remote airport security boost

Regional and remote airport security boost

Security screening officers at more than 50 regional and remote airports are being given specialist training to help them detect terrorist threats.

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By AAP 02.10.2018 05:00 PM

Security staff at regional and remote airports across Australia will be given specialist training to detect and disrupt terrorist threats.

At least 53 airports will be offered the security screening training in the next 12 months, with the first sessions expected to start later this year.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton said aviation remained an attractive target for terrorists and it was important for screening officers across the country to remain ahead of evolving threats.

"Regional and remote airports can often be disadvantaged when it comes to the delivery of specialised training because of their distance from capital cities and the costs involved," Mr Dutton said on Tuesday.

"This is why the government is stepping in to help by providing this training which will lead to increased standards across the board."

Funding for the specialist training is in addition to a $294 million security boost for airports, international mail centres and air cargo facilities announced in this year's federal budget.

The major commonwealth cash injection was triggered by an alleged plot to put a bomb on a plane leaving Sydney airport last year.

Two men are before the courts in connection with the alleged plot after pleading not guilty to planning a terrorist attack.

They were allegedly told to smuggle a bomb hidden inside a meat grinder onto an Etihad plane flying from Sydney to Abu Dhabi in July 2017.

The federal funding is being spent on full body scanners and advanced x-ray equipment as well as stricter staff training and security checks.

More than 140 counter-terrorism officers will also be deployed at airports, with another 50 officers providing tactical intelligence and support.

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