UPDATED: Tuesday, March 22, 2016 11:44 A.M. ET
Reuters is reporting that the Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the two bomb attacks in Brussels on Tuesday:
“Islamic State fighters carried out a series of bombings with explosive belts and devices on Tuesday, targeting an airport and a central metro station in the center of the Belgian capital Brussels,” AMAQ agency said.
UPDATED: Tuesday, March 22, 2016 10:35 A.M. ET
The Washington Post reports that the death toll continued to rise Tuesday in Brussels after three deadly terrorist explosions rocked the city’s capital, leaving more than 30 dead at the airport and a metro station.
The incident ignited fear in the “hearts of the European Union just days after a manhunt captured a key suspect in last year’s Paris massacres,” the report says.
The latest bloodshed also made clear that European capitals remain perilously vulnerable despite attempts to dismantle the militant network that perpetrated the worst terrorist attack in Paris in generations last November. It also raised fears of further reprisal attacks for the arrest of the fugitive suspect last week.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but European leaders wasted no time in referencing other attacks by Islamist militants. “We are at war,” said French Prime Minister Manuel Valls.
SOURCE: The Washington Post | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty
Twin explosions rocked the check-in zone at Brussels Airport Tuesday, killing and wounding several people, while another blast tore through a metro station in the nation’s capital.
The incident began when a pair of explosions blasted through a departure corridor at Brussels Airport, in the town of Zaventem, “about seven miles northeast of the city center, just before 8 a.m.[local time],” reports The New York Times:
According to news agencies, 13 people were killed at the airport, and 15 in the subway bombing, while 30 others were wounded. Prime Minister Charles Michel of Belgium said there were “numerous” dead. “We were fearing terrorist attacks, and that has now happened,” he said. At least one of the two explosions at the airport appeared to have been set off by a suicide bomber, officials said.
Mr. Michel issued an extraordinary appeal to the population to “avoid all movement,” as the authorities braced for possible further attacks.
The attacks put the Belgian capital in a state of virtual lockdown. All flights were canceled for the day. All subway, tram and bus travel was shut down. Eurostar canceled its trains connecting Brussels with Paris and London. Thalys, which runs high-speed trains linking dozens of cities in Belgium, France, Germany and the Netherlands, suspended service. Cellphone lines were jammed as panicked travelers and Belgians tried to make calls.
This is a developing story.
SOURCE: NBC News | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty | VIDEO CREDIT: NBC News