Australian prime minister: Threat from plane plot is over

Delays are caused by extra security measures taking place including several explosive checks

Australian Federal Police Deputy Commissioner Michael Phelan (R) and New South Wales Police Deputy Commissioner David Hudson speak at a press conference related to arrests in a foiled aircraft attack plot at the Australian Federal Police (AFP) headquarters in Sydney, Australia, August 4, 2017.

The two suspects, Khaled Khayat and Mahmoud Khayat, were charged Thursday night and appeared Friday morning in Parramatta Local Court in Sydney via video link from their jail cells, where they have been remanded in custody as they await a trial date.

The plan was for the brother of one of the suspects to take the luggage with him onboard an Etihad Airways plane leaving Sydney airport on 15 July.

Khayat's brother is still overseas and had "no idea" he was to carry an improvised explosive device (IED), Mr Phelan said.

After the failure to check in the explosive on July 15, the men deconstructed that bomb and began working instead on a technically-advanced chemical dispersion device.

Investigators said parts of the explosive, a roadside bomb, were sent through global air cargo from Turkey through Islamic State operatives in Syria to one of the suspects in Australia, Phelan said. The chemical dispersion device has been neutralized, officials said.

A third man remains in custody but has not yet been charged, while the fourth man was released without charge on Tuesday.

They subsequently arrested the four men on July 29.

The bomb's components allegedly originated in Turkey, officially an ally, albeit an uneasy one, in the coalition fight against Daesh in Iraq and Syria, before reaching Sydney on an global cargo flight.

The raids carried by police at five properties in Sydney suburbs had led to arrest of four men.

Two men have been charged with terrorism offences in Sydney for their alleged plot to blow up a passenger plane, according to the Independent.

It has emerged that an improvised device reached Sydney Airport's global terminal after a passenger packed it inside a piece of luggage.

However, there is "no information at all to suggest" the device would be used on an airplane, Phelan said.

"But I want to remind everyone that this is the 13th time in three years that we have been able to prevent a terrorist attack on australian soil, thanks to the excellence of our security services".

Australian intelligence services have disrupted or stopped at least a dozen major terrorism plots since 2014, including one a year ago that would have seen a bomb detonated in central Melbourne, according to the government.

Etihad had no immediate comment on Friday but said earlier this week it was assisting police with its investigation.

"All the security agencies and those responsible for security of cargo and so on have put in place extra measures since that time", Phelan said. Both are due back in court on November 14 where they could face life imprisonment.

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