Shots fired after attack on Belgian army barracks

A lone attacker tried to smash his car through the gates of an army barracks in southern Belgium and fled in the vehicle after shots were fired, Belgium’s defence minister said.

Defence mnister Steven Vandeput said the intruder’s motive was unclear but insisted “it is certainly an aggression targeting the barracks”.

Police detained a suspect three hours after the attack following a manhunt which also involved helicopters, said prosecutor’s spokesman Vincent Macq.

Since a gunman killed four people in the May 2014 attack on the Jewish museum in Brussels, Belgium has been on higher alert for further extremist attacks.

Police killed two men and arrested a third in January in a counter-terrorism raid in the eastern city of Verviers.

Yesterday’s incident occurred near the French-speaking town of Namur, south of Brussels. The suburb of Flawinne is the site of one of Belgium’s major military barracks, home to the 2nd Commando Battalion.

There were no reports of serious injuries at the barracks. A wrecked Ford was found close by the barracks.

Belgium has been one of the largest recruiting bases per capita for foreign fighters joining Islamic State.


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