Brussels has been placed on its highest level of security alert after what officials describe as a “serious and imminent threat”.
The Belgian capital and region have moved up to level four after intelligence suggested the threat of a “Paris-style” attack involving weapons and explosives.
The city’s metro system will remain closed for both Saturday and Sunday.
#Belgium: Maximum alert in #Brussels – risk of attack with weapons and explosives
CharlesMichel</a> <a href="https://t.co/XAHGmhDIRP">pic.twitter.com/XAHGmhDIRP</a></p>— euronews (euronews) November 21, 2015
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel confirmed the level four status. “It has been recommended that we stop the metro until Sunday afternoon,” he said. “I cannot comment on any ongoing operations or the inquiry for obvious reasons.”
Heavy security presence on the streets
Brussels today. Photograph: Youssef Boudlal/Reuters pic.twitter.com/NLgnrX5wq0— Zdenka Pregelj (@CountessBezuhov) November 21, 2015
Police and soldiers are out in force on the streets.
The focus is on protecting public areas like stations and squares.
The government’s crisis centre has warned the public to avoid crowded areas where people are likely to gather.