Suspect packages force embassies in Australia to close

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Several embassies, including the US, British and Japanese missions, have been forced to close in Australia after suspicious packages were received.

Part of the Australian parliament in Canberra was also closed as well as the South Korean embassy.


Emergency servicemen remove a suspicious package from the Japanese embassy in Canberra

It was the second time this week that the parliament had to be evacuated.

It comes a few days after the Indonesian embassy was evacuated twice after being sent parcels containing harmless white powder.

The British High Commission and US, Japanese and South Korean embassies all confirmed they had received packages.

"We received an envelope containing white powder. We closed off the area and appropriate precautions were taken," said a US embassy spokeswoman.

The Australian government has said it believes the Indonesian embassy security scares are most likely linked to Indonesia's jailing of an Australian woman on drug smuggling charges, which has sparked an outcry in Australia.