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Suspected Terrorist Attack Stopped in Brussels
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Summary: Belgian troops were able to stop a suspected suicide bomber from carrying out an attack in the central train station in Brussels.

A suspected suicide bomber was shot dead inside Brussels’ central train station by Belgian troops. No other casualties were reported. In what appears to be the latest planned terrorist attack to rattle Europe, this one was able to end without any innocent victims.

  
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Since the last attack in Brussels over a year ago, the city upped their military patrols. One of the routine patrols happened upon the suspect after he had just set off a small explosion in the train station around 8:30 pm. Witnesses claimed the man spouted off Islamic remarks but officials denied this account. Those that saw the incident claimed the man, described as dark with short hair in a white shirt and black jeans, was carrying a briefcase that he set off. Flames can be seen in a picture one witness took on the floor of the station.

Station employee Nicolas Van Herreweghen described a man in his early-30s acting agitated, yelling about jihadists and “Allahu akbar,” Arabic for “God is great” before blowing up a briefcase. There was no indication that he was wearing explosives on his body but one Belgian newspaper reported that the suspect was wearing an explosive belt and backpack, causing momentary panic.

Bomb disposal teams were immediately sent in to clear the area of any other possible bombs. The streets around Renaissance town square were cleared after the incident to ensure the safety of tourists and locals out enjoying the hot summer evening.

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Prosecutor Eric Van Der Sypt said, “We consider this a terrorist attack.” The attack in Paris in November 2015 placed the entire continent on edge, particularly the city. Brussels is home to NATO and the European Union. With recent attacks in Britain and before those in France, Germany and Sweden carried out by members of the Syria-based Islamist group, fear levels have increased everywhere. Brussels has a population of 1.2 million Muslims, about a quarter of its total population.

Experts state that the man’s actions could be a “lone wolf” assault where a radicalized person with no access to weapons or training carries out their own attack. Brussels security consultant Claude Moniquet told RTL, “Such isolated acts will continue in Brussels, in Paris and elsewhere. It’s inevitable.”



Moniquet explained that Belgium has been one of the most productive recruiting grounds for foreign Islamist fighters so attacks are likely to continue although most would be done by “amateurs.” He related the attack to the one that had happened the day before in Paris when a man rammed a car filled with weapons and explosives into a French police convoy. Luckily no one was injured in that attack.

Do you think there is any way of protecting against radicalized individuals? Tell us in the comments below.

To learn about other recent attacks, read these articles:

Photo: collective-evolution.com



 

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