Yesterday evening at 20:39, a man identified as 36-year-old Moroccan and known only by his initials, OZ, entered the Brussels train station with a suitcase containing “nails and some small gas canisters”. After approaching a group of passengers, he attempted to detonate the bomb, leading to a “partial explosion”, before running towards a soldier and shouting “Allahu akbar”. The soldier opened fire and killed the suspect immediately. There was a second explosion from the suitcase, but no one was injured.
The spokesperson for the federal prosecutor’s office said that the suspect acted alone and was not known to the authorities.
This is not the first terror incident that the city has faced. In 2016, 32 people were killed and 300 were injured as a result of two suicide attacks — one in Brussels Airport and the other at a metro station. Since then, Belgium has raised its security alert to the second highest level. Following the attack on Tuesday, the suspect’s home, thought to be in the Molenbeek area of Brussels, was raided by the authorities later on that day.
If you have been affected by this incident, we have a UCKG HelpCentre in Belgium with a 24-hr helpline available. If you would like to talk to someone in the UK, please call our helpline on 020 7686 6000.