Belgium .- Police detain eight people on suspicion of preparing an attack

File – A Belgian policeman during an operation – JONAS ROOSENS / ZUMA PRESS / CONTACTOPHOTO

Eight people have been arrested last night in different municipalities in Belgium as part of two operations launched by the Federal Police on suspicion of preparing a terrorist attack on Belgian territory, although the authorities have not given details of what could be the target of the attack or how they intended to carry it out.

Most of the arrests took place in neighborhoods in Antwerp and Brussels, according to the Federal Prosecutor’s Office in a statement quoted by local media. The judicial authority specifies that the police actions are part of two separate investigation cases which appear to be related but it remains to be investigated to what extent they were coordinated.

On the one hand, five suspects were arrested in several districts of Antwerp (Merksem, Borgerhout and Deurne), as well as in the town of Eupen (east of the country) and the Brussels district of Molenbeek-Saint-Jean. Police suspect that at least two of them were preparing an attack in Belgium.

The other three people arrested, who authorities also suspect were preparing an attack, remain in custody after being arrested in Brussels and the nearby town of Zaventem.