Suspicious packages sent to several diplomatic missions in Australia

The'hazardous material warnings as mapped on the Victoria Emergency website. Image Victoria Emergency

The'hazardous material warnings as mapped on the Victoria Emergency website. Image Victoria Emergency

Victoria police issued a statement saying it was aware of "a number of consulate offices in Melbourne today receiving suspicious packages".

Emergency service personel exit the building where the Korean consulate is located in Melbourne.

Melbourne emergency services have responded to a number of call-outs for "hazardous material" in the last hour according to the state's emergency response website, which shows a total of 17 hazardous material incidents now in progress.

Police in Australia are investigating suspicious packages sent to at least ten embassies and consulates in Canberra and Melbourne, including those of Britain, the United States and New Zealand.

"At this time we believe the matter is targeted and not impacting the general community", the statement said.

Australian Federal Police are now examining the packages, which were delivered to consulates on St Kilda Rd and in the CBD.

The Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) said it was assisting police.

The Indian High Commission is located in Canberra; there were no immediate reports of the high commission being among the locations that received suspicious packages.

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Sky reported that the scare coincided with the U.S. embassy's hazmat training, which had been booked for months.

Addresses for the events include Market Street, Bourke Street, Middleton Lane, William Street, and St Kilda Road in Melbourne, Elgin Street at Carlton, and Yertchuk Avenue at Ashwood.

Vic Emergency, a government response agency, reported several instances of hazardous materials being found across the city on Wednesday, including near the Spanish, Japanese, Egyptian, Indian and Pakistani consulates.

"Staff were evacuated from the Consulate as a precautionary measure", a spokesperson said.

Emergency workers wearing chemical suits were seen entering some of the buildings.

"The circumstances surrounding these incidents are being investigated".

It comes two days after the ABC understands the Argentinian consulate in Sydney was sent three bags containing asbestos and fibreglass. Results from police testing have yet to be revealed.

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