Alphonse Youla, 40, who works at Zaventem Airport luggage security, said that before the first bomb went off, he heard a man shouting something in Arabic.
“Then, the tiled ceiling of the airport collapsed. I helped carry out five dead, with their legs destroyed, as if the bomb came from a piece of luggage,” he told reporters, his hands covered in blood. “It’s from the people I carried out.”
The federal prosecutor told a news conference one of the two explosions was likely to have been caused by a suicide bomber. A Belgian TV station reported that one of the bombs at the airport contained nails.
Flemish language broadcaster, VTM, interviewed Marc Decramer, of the Gasthuisberg hospital in Leuven, who said the hospital was treating 11 people with serious injuries, and three of them were critical. Mr Decramer said the wounded had fractures and deep cuts caused by flying glass and nails.
Passenger Paolo Saraca Volpini said an airport announcer spoke over the public address system about a quarter of an hour after the blasts, his voice breaking with emotion, and said in several languages “we are experiencing an attack” and asking people in Terminals A and B to stay where they were.
One passenger, who had cleared the security checks when the bombs went off, said that after the explosions, passengers inside the airport panicked and started running in search of shelter.
“People were taking cover in shops and where they could. We managed to get on the plane, but it did not take off and then we were escorted out to busses to leave,” said Sylwia Czerska.