Friday, March 25, 2016

#BrusselsAttacks: Suspect Shot in Schaerbeek Raid (VIDEO)

See the live blog at Telegraph UK, "Images emerge of suspect from Schaerbeek raid being dragged away," and "Video purports to show man 'neutralised' in Brussels raid."

Also, "'Several explosions, man neutralised'."

Plus, at WSJ, "Two Shot as Belgium Intensifies Terror Sweep":

BRUSSELS—Belgian police carried out multiple raids and shot two people who resisted arrest on Friday as they broadened their investigations into the Islamic State terror network linked to the Brussels attacks and a plot foiled Thursday in France.

The Belgium prosecutor identified the second suicide bomber at the Brussels airport as Najim Laachraoui, a 24-year-old Belgian national of Moroccan descent who is believed to have been the bomb maker of both the Paris and Brussels attacks. His DNA traces were found on one of the suicide vests and one of the detonators used in Paris, as well as in the hideouts used by the Paris attackers before the assault.

Mr. Laachraoui traveled to Syria in 2013 and was charged in absentia in February for being a recruiter for Islamic State. U.S. officials said they were surprised that Mr. Laachraoui, one of the Islamic State’s most well known bomb makers, blew himself up in the Belgian attack. Some of these officials said they think he had little choice, and was clearly worried that authorities were moving in on him.

Officials said Islamic State has many experts in explosives and it isn’t clear how quickly another of their operatives will step into Mr. Laachraoui’s role.

The raids in Belgium on Friday followed the arrest of a man in France who had been convicted for terrorism and was said to be “in an advance stage” of planning an attack, in the latest example of the potential danger posed by the Brussels-based network responsible for the Brussels and Paris terror attacks.

French President Fran├žois Hollande told reporters Friday that the network of terrorists that carried out the attacks in Paris and Brussels was “on the way to being destroyed” but there were “other networks” that constituted a threat.

“We have had results in tracking down the terrorists and, in Brussels as well as Paris, there have been a number of arrests made,” Mr. Hollande said.

On Thursday, French authorities arrested Reda Kriket, a 34-year-old Frenchman who was convicted of terrorism in absentia in Belgium last year, along with the suspected ringleader of the Paris attacks, Abdelhamid Abaaoud. French police found explosives and weapons in his apartment.

Belgian police detained two people on Friday in connection to the suspected French plot. One of the men, identified by the Belgian prosecutors, as Tawfik A., was also shot in the leg at the time of his arrest during a house raid. A second suspect, Salah A., was arrested without injuries on Friday.

In another operation, in the Schaerbeek neighborhood of Brussels, police ended up shooting and arresting a man near a tram stop with a backpack that authorities thought was suspicious. The Belgian prosecutor’s office didn’t identify the man, who was injured in the leg.

A Belgian government official described the captured man as a “big fish” and Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel canceled a planned event with Secretary of State John Kerry just as the Schaerbeek operation began, officials said...