Brussels on alert for Paris-like attack

Brussels is also home to the headquarters of Nato

Reuters November 21, 2015


Belgium put capital Brussels on maximum security alert on Saturday, shutting the metro and warning people to avoid crowds because of a ‘serious and imminent’ threat of coordinated, multiple attacks by militants.

A week after the Paris bombings and shootings carried out by Islamic State militants, of whom one suspect from Brussels is at large and said by police to be highly dangerous, Brussels was placed on the top level ‘four’ in the government’s threat scale after a meeting of top ministers, police and security services.

Soldiers were on guard in parts of Brussels, including at the institutions of the European Union headquartered in the city. Brussels is also home to the headquarters of Nato.

“The result of relatively precise information pointed to the risk of an attack along the lines of what took place in Paris,” Prime Minister Charles Michel told a news conference on Saturday.

“We are talking about the threat that several individuals with arms and explosives would launch an attack perhaps in several locations at the same time,” he added.

Michel declined to elaborate, but said the government would review the situation on Sunday afternoon. The metro system is to remain closed until then, in line with recommendation of the government’s crisis centre. 

Published in The Express Tribune, November 22nd, 2015.


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