Jewish Schools in Belgium Cancel Classes

Jewish schools in Brussels and Antwerp cancel classes on Friday due to increased terror threats, local media reports.

Ben Ariel ,

Security for Jews in Belgium (file)
Security for Jews in Belgium (file)
Joods Actueel/Flash 90

Jewish schools in Brussels and Antwerp decided to cancel classes on Friday due to increased terror threats, the Belgian Joods Actueel website reports.

Belgium is on a heightened terror alert after authorities raided a terror cell in the eastern town of Verviers, killing two suspects in a firefight and arresting a third.

According to the Belgian website, based on an internal security analysis in the Jewish communities of possible threats, officials have decided to close the schools.

Isi Morsel, the head of the largest Jewish school Jesode Hatora said, “We were informed that we are a potential target and therefore we are taking no chances.”

“The school will remain closed until further notice. Nevertheless, we are confident that the police and the mayor will do everything possible to address the threat so we can open the schools on Monday,” Morsel added.

A Belgian counterterrorism official told CNN earlier on Thursday that the suspected terror cell that was raided had received instructions from ISIS and that some of its members had travelled to Syria.

The official said security agencies in several European countries were intensely investigating several groups of returnees from Syria and Iraq, including the group that authorities confronted in Belgium.

There was no suggestion the returnees are connected with the Kouachi brothers, who carried out the attack on Charlie Hebdo, nor Amedy Coulibaly, the man who attacked a Paris kosher supermarket and also pledged allegiance to ISIS.

In November, a hassidic Jew from the Belz sect was stabbed in the neck in Antwerp, part of a growing trend of increased anti-Semitic attacks across Europe.



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