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Man stabs two police officers in Belgium and is investigated for terrorism


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Belgian authorities suspect that the man who killed a police officer and wounded another in a knife attack on Thursday night may have had terrorist motives.

The country’s attorney general, which took over the investigation of the case, claims that the attacker’s name was on a security agency’s list of radical Muslims and that he shouted “Allahu akbar” at the time of the incident. The expression, which means “God is greater” in Arabic, is common in Islamic cultures, but has also become frequent in terrorist attacks in recent decades.

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The crime took place around 18:15, in the commune of Schaerbeek, near Brussels. Prosecutor’s spokesman Eric van der Sypt says the officers were in a police car and were waiting for a red light to open when they were attacked. The 29-year-old driver was stabbed in the throat and died, while the 23-year-old passenger had only his arm injured.

He managed to trigger reinforcements by radio, who shot in the legs and abdomen of the aggressor. He was then taken to a hospital, where he will be questioned as soon as his recovery allows.

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Also according to Van der Sypt, the suspect, a 32-year-old Belgian, had gone to a police station and threatened other officers hours before the crime. Police, describing a “disturbed mental state”, referred him to the psychiatric ward of a local hospital which he then abandoned, barred from being detained against his will.

Belgian Prime Minister Alexander de Croo mourned the policeman’s death, saying on Twitter that the episode was an example of police risking “their lives daily to ensure the safety of citizens”.

The episode comes at the same time that the trial of those involved in the attacks that killed 32 people in the country in 2016, orchestrated by the Islamic State, is underway. The sessions take place in the former headquarters of NATO, the western military alliance, on the outskirts of the capital, converted into a maximum security judicial complex.

Between 2016 and 2018, Belgian security forces were the target of a series of attacks. The last of these terrorist classifieds took place in Liège in May 2018, when a radical Muslim murdered two police officers and a student before being killed by authorities.

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I have worked as a journalist for over 8 years. I have written for many different news outlets, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and CNN. I have also published my own book on the history of the world. I am currently a freelance writer and editor, and I am always looking for new opportunities to write and edit interesting content.

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