Belgium opens terror probe into machete attack

Belgium's Prime Minister announces terrorism probe into machete attack that wounded two policewomen in Charleroi.

Ben Ariel,

Site of machete attack in Charleroi
Site of machete attack in Charleroi
Reuters

Belgium's Prime Minister on Sunday announced a terrorism probe into Saturday's machete attack that wounded two policewomen, AFP reported.

"We have been informed by federal prosecutors that an investigation has started for attempted terrorist murder... given certain elements (in the case)," Charles Michel told reporters.

He was referring to the attacker's cry of "Allahu Akbar" during the assault in front of a police station.

The Islamic State (ISIS) jihadist group on Sunday claimed the attack in a statement on its Amaq news agency, saying the attacker was a “soldier of the caliphate”.

No information was given about the attacker's identity during Sunday's press conference in Brussels which followed a meeting of Belgium's security services. Michel had previously said the attacker has not been identified "but it seems once more to be an attack with a terrorist connotation."

The attack outside the main police station in the city of Charleroi, about 60 kilometers (40 miles) south of Brussels, left one of the policewomen with "deep wounds to the face" while the other was slightly injured, Belga news agency said.

Charleroi police said the attacker was shot and killed, while the two victims were out of danger.

Belgium has been on high alert since suicide bombers struck Brussels airport and a metro station near the European Union's institutions on March 22, killing 32 people.

Those attacks were also claimed by ISIS, which has claimed numerous terror strikes in Europe over the last year.




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