Belgian media say Brussels prime suspect not arrested

Published: March 23, 2016
PHOTO: Reuters

PHOTO: Reuters

BRUSSELS: Belgian media which earlier reported the arrest on Wednesday of a prime suspect in Tuesday’s bomb attacks in Brussels said the person detained was not, in fact, Najim Laachraoui. La Libre Belgique newspaper said another person had been arrested.

DH, which first reported the story, also said the man detained in the Anderlecht district had been misidentified. Police and prosecutors have been declining all comment but will hold a news conference at noon GMT.

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The two suicide bombers who carried out the attacks in Brussels airport on Tuesday were brothers Khalid and Brahim El Bakraoui, Brussels residents known to the police for crime, the RTBF public broadcaster said, quoting an unnamed source.

Khalid, under a false name, had rented the flat in the Forest borough of the Belgian capital where police killed a gunman in a raid last week, RTBF said.

Investigators found after that raid an Islamic State flag, an assault rifle, detonators and a fingerprint of Paris attacks prime suspect Salah Abdeslam, who was arrested three days later.

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Both brothers have a criminal records, but have not been linked by the police to terrorism until now, RTBF said.

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