Troops take to Belgian streets to guard against attacks

Up to 300 military will be stationed at locations to guard potential targets

Troops take to Belgian streets to guard against attacks

World Bultein / News Desk

Belgium is deploying hundreds of troops to guard potential targets of terrorism, including Jewish sites and diplomatic missions, following a series of raids and arrests, the defence minister said on Saturday.

Up to 300 military will be stationed at locations such as the U.S. and Israeli embassies in Brussels and NATO and EU institutions.

Troops will reinforce police at least until Thursday, when authorities will review the national threat level, set at 3 on a scale of 4 this week.

"It's very important to say that this wasn't a simple decision. But it was necessary, at a time when police are overly engaged, for the army to enter in a supporting role," Defence Minister Steven Vandeput told reporters.

On Thursday, two gunmen were killed in the Belgian town of Verviers during raids on an group that authorities said was planning to attack police.

Guns, munitions and explosives, as well as police uniforms and a large amount of money, were all seized by police during the operation. Thirteen people were arrested in total, and five people were charged on Friday with "participating in the activities of a terrorist group", prosecutors said.

Last Mod: 17 Ocak 2015, 17:08
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