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Belgian police detain 2 in fresh anti-terror raids

25 June 2016 21:24

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Belgium has charged two people with participation in the activities of a terrorist group, as the country remains on high alert following the deadly attacks in the capital, Brussels, in March.

Police arrested the two during anti-terror raids.

“Two persons… were taken for questioning and arrested by the investigating judge,” the federal prosecutor’s office said in a statement Saturday.

“They are charged, as perpetrator or co-perpetrator, for participation (in) the activities of a terrorist group.”

Belgium still grapples with the aftermath of the terrorist attacks in Brussels’ busy airport and metro system, which killed 32 people. Daesh, a Takfiri terrorist group based in Iraq and Syria, claimed the attacks, which police said were linked to shootings and explosions in the French capital, Paris, in November 2015. Those attacks in Paris claimed 130 lives.

However, a local website said Saturday that the man arrested by anti-terror police in Verviers was planning an attack on fans watching Belgium’s next Euro 2016 game against Hungary on Sunday. Three men were arrested and charged last week with police saying they attempted “terrorist murder.”

Police also detained 40 people in the June 17-18 raids in Brussels and across the country. No arms or explosives were found in those raids but officials said they were carried out due to the need for “an immediate intervention.”

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel has promised “additional and updated security measures” during the time the country remains in a state of emergency.

“We want to continue living normally,” Michel said after the raids in mid-June.

The tightened security in Belgium comes as its neighbor France, which is hosting the Euro 2016 games, is on maximum alert.

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