Brussels bomb disposal team intercepts car with gas canisters, arrests suspect – reports
Police sealed off the area of Saint-Gilles and evacuated some residents on Thursday while experts examine the scene, a police spokeswoman told Belgian media, as cited by Reuters.
Frka u Bruxellesu. Kod navodno radikaliziranog gradjanina pronadjene plinske boce u autu. Policijska blokada u kvartu Saint-Gilles pic.twitter.com/SlFu9G68Dl— Tomislav Krasnec (@krasnec) 2 March 2017
The car was intercepted by police at Porte de Hal after it ran through several red lights.
The vehicle contained two gas cylinders and the driver was on a list of people suspected of having links to radical organizations, the Mayor of Saint-Gilles Charles Piqué is quoted on Nieuwsblad. Broadcaster RTL said three canisters had been recovered.
Nearby shops and the Porte de Hall subway station were also closed as a result of the investigation. Road closures have also been made and heavy traffic on certain routes has been reported as a result.
Par ordre de police; le bd de Waterloo est fermé au trafic ahd la Porte de Hal. Gros embarras de circulation.— Mobiris FR (@MobirisFr) March 2, 2017
A Reuters journalist at the scene heard a blast about an hour after the incident was reported. It has not been established if this was a controlled explosion by the bomb squad.
Brussels is on a level-3 alert, the second highest on the scale, over the terrorist threat to the Belgian capital. In March 2016, 32 people were killed in a series of attacks on Brussels’ Zavantem Airport and a metro station.