Asia beefs up security for New Year's Eve

Indonesian police officers patrolling at Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta airport yesterday. Officials say security has been ratcheted up for New Year's Eve this year in more than just the capital cities, following terrorist attacks in cities around the worl
Indonesian police officers patrolling at Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta airport yesterday. Officials say security has been ratcheted up for New Year's Eve this year in more than just the capital cities, following terrorist attacks in cities around the world this year, including in Paris and Bangkok.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Security officials are on high alert in Asia as hundreds of thousands of people are expected to join crowded celebrations to greet the new year.

Security has been beefed up this year, officials say, following recent terror attacks around the world, including those in Paris and California, and the one that killed 20 people at Bangkok's Erawan Shrine in August.

In Shanghai, officials were also told to ensure there will be no overcrowding at popular haunts and countdown events. The Chinese city is marking one year since a stampede killed 36 revellers at the Bund area on New Year's Eve.

In Ankara, Turkish police yesterday detained two suspected suicide bombers linked to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. They were plotting an attack on New Year's Eve in the capital, a Turkish official said.

New Zealand and Australian cities will first greet the new year, followed by Western Hemisphere cities.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 31, 2015, with the headline 'Asia beefs up security for New Year's Eve'. Print Edition | Subscribe