Israel warns of New Year terror threat in India

Israel has issued a warning of imminent "terrorist attacks" on tourists in India, advising its citizens to avoid public places during the New Year celebrations.

A statement from the Counter-Terrorism Bureau urged particular caution in the south-west of India.

It said travellers should shun crowded areas like beach parties, clubs, and markets.

India is a popular tourist destination for Israelis.

Young visitors from Israel often travel to areas like Goa to relax after completing their compulsory military service.

In a unusual move, the warning was published on Friday evening in Israel, after the start of the Jewish Sabbath when government offices close for business.

The Counter-Terrorism Bureau urged Israeli families to contact their relatives in India and tell them of the threat.

It did not say what had prompted the warning.

In 2012, the wife of Israeli diplomat stationed in India was critically wounded in a car bomb attack along with her driver and two others.

The incident sparked diplomatic tensions when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused Iran of being behind it - a charge strongly denied by Tehran.

Israel's warning came hours after Australian anti-terror police charged a man for making threats against Sydney's New Year's Eve celebrations.

The 40-year-old was arrested at Sydney Airport on Thursday after arriving on a plane from London.

A week ago, Australian police said they had foiled a major terror attack planned for Melbourne on Christmas Day.

Security plans have been adjusted at large gatherings around the world in view of the lorry attacks in Nice and Berlin, where bystanders were mown down by extremists.

In London, over 3,000 police officers are being deployed to safeguard the New Year's Eve celebrations.