Australia advises citizens to be vigilant around KL


PETALING JAYA: Australia has issued a travel advisory for its citizens urging them to be “particularly vigilant at this time” around Kuala Lumpur because of a threat of terrorism, but also noted that there was an on-going terrorism threat in Malaysia.

However, the travel advisory web site said Australian travellers were advised only to “exercise normal safety precautions” across the country and that the “level of advice has not changed” for Malaysia overall.

Threat levels posted at the Australian government travel advisory web site

Malaysian police have so far not issued any safety warnings about terrorism in Kuala Lumpur.

A threat level map posted on the Australian travel advice web site shows most of Malaysia in green, with only coastal eastern Sabah in orange, the colour for caution. Kuala Lumpur was not highlighted by colour on the map.

The advisor said “terrorists may be planning attacks in and around Kuala Lumpur” and that attacks may target Western interests or locations frequented by Westerners, and noted that Malaysia had made several arrests around entertainment areas.

The only specific advice was to avoid all travel to the coastal resorts of eastern Sabah, including islands, dive sites and associated tourist facilities due to the high threat of kidnapping.

Bloomberg news agency had headlined a “terror warning for Kuala Lumpur” in a news report today but also quoted a Malaysian foreign ministry spokeswoman as saying “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 give a true reflection of the situation”.