Security measures upped to ensure safety at year-end

The government is taking preventative measures against terrorism to guarantee security nationwide following the arrests of alleged terrorists plotting several attacks during the holiday season.

National Police chief Gen. Badrodin Haiti said on Monday that at the end of last month the police received information from counterparts in Australia, the US and Singapore on planned attacks by known terrorist groups.

"We are on high alert and have taken preventative measures," he said.

Badrodin said the police would continued monitoring known terrorist groups, especially groups linked to international networks.

Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan said the police and the military would deploy 150,000 personnel across the country to safeguard public places considered to be at high risk of terrorist attacks, such as airports, foreign missions, the State Palace and other strategic facilities.

The National Police's Densus 88 counterterrorism squad arrested nine suspected terrorists in several cities over the weekend in security operations. The suspected terrorists were allegedly planning a string of attacks on top officials, police officers and strategic places.

The success in preventing the attacks comes at a time when Indonesia and Australia strengthened co-operation in sharing intelligence on terrorism.

"The rise of ISIS [Islamic State] in the Middle East is something that has destabilized security in Australia, Indonesia and other countries in the region and it has become important to work together to counter it," Australian Justice Minister Michael Keenan said in Jakarta on Monday.

Ministerial representatives from Australia came to Jakarta to conduct the first bilateral meeting of a Ministerial Council on Law and Security between the two nations.