Melbourne, Jan 29: A number of schools in Australia were put under lockdown and students evacuated after "numerous threats" made to them as they opened today after the long Christmas holiday period, sparking multiple police operations.
Several schools in Sydney and Melbourne were evacuated and went into lockdown after receiving bomb threats this morning. The threats came on the first day of the opening of the schools after the long Christmas break, leading to multiple police operations, media reports said.
Seven schools in New South Wales (NSW) went into lockdown following threats. Local police confirmed schools in Penrith, Richmond, Mona Vale, Ambarvale, Woolooware, Ulladulla and Lake Illawarra were affected.
Police said they launched operations in Victoria, after threatening phone calls were made to at least four schools. "Police are aware of numerous threats made to schools in the Metropolitan and Southern Regions. Investigations are continuing, and police are liaising with the Department of Education," a police statement read.
The NSW Department of Education statement said each school was taking precautionary measures to ensure the safety of its students and no students were in danger.
2GB broadcaster Ray Hadley said all of the threats were understood to be hoaxes, a Sydney Morning Herald report said, adding there was no confirmation that any of the threats were genuine. At least four Melbourne schools were also evacuated after receiving threatening phone calls.
"The schools are being evacuated as a precaution," Victoria Police said in a statement. "We are aware that schools in a number of other states and countries have received similar phone calls in the past 24 hours," it said. Australia has raised the terror threat alert level to high in September 2014, with the government passing a series of national security laws and police conducting numerous raids across the country.