Belgian police have arrested six people as part of an investigation into Tuesday’s suicide bombings in Brussels.
The raids took place in central Brussels, and the neighbourhoods of Schaerbeek and Jette. Three of those arrested were ‘just in front’ of the Public Prosecutor’s office in the centre of the city, the spokesperson told Belgian daily Le Soir.
So far there is no information about the identities of those arrested. The Public prosecutor will decide whether to bring any charges against those detained later on Friday.
Security and investigations
It comes after the authorities lowered the security alert level down a notch from four – the highest level – to three, and as the search continues for at least one Brussels attacker now on the run.
Soldiers have been deployed to nuclear sites across the country as it was revealed the suspects in the airport attacks had been spying on a senior official in the nuclear industry.
The man who was wearing a hat and a cream jacket has not been named. There are reports that a suspected second bomber in the attack on the metro is also being sought.
The self-proclaimed Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attacks which killed at least 31 people and wounded 270.
Turkey’s accusations that it had deported one of the suicide bombers and had warned Belgium about him prompted two Belgian ministers to offer to resign on Thursday.
The Prime Minister Charles Michel refused to accept their resignations, instead asking Interior Minister Jan Jambon and Justice Minister Koen Geens to stay on.
As questions continue to be raised about European countries’ response to the threat from Islamist extremists, Belgium is facing more questions about alleged intelligence failures.
In Washington, Reuters has reported – quoting unnamed sources – that two brothers who blew themselves up in this week’s attacks were on a US terror watch list.
BREAKING: Two brothers among #Brussels attackers were on U.S. terrorism watch list: sources— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) 24 March 2016
But the report did not say when the pair, Brahim and Khalid El Bakraoui, were added to the list and the information has not been confirmed.
The Dutch Justice Minister Ard van der Steur has denied reports that Brahim El Bakraoui – who Turkey said had been deported to the Netherlands – was on Dutch or international wanted lists.
Many families around the world face an agonising wait to find out if their loved ones are among the 31 people known to have died in the attacks, after forensic experts say it may take weeks to identify the victims.
Brussels Philarmonic Orchestra announced that they will play Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’ at Place de la Bourse at 1500 local time in tribute to the victims of the attacks.