UK

Brussels Soldiers Shoot Dead Man Who Attacked Soldiers With Knife

Prosecutors are treating it as terrorism.

25/08/2017 20:49 BST | Updated 25/08/2017 22:26 BST

A man shot after attacking two soldiers with a knife in Brussels has died, officials said, adding they were treating it as an attempted terrorist murder.

The man had shouted “Allahu Akbar” - Arabic for “God is Great” - twice during the attack, spokeswoman for Belgium’s federal prosecutors said.

The soldiers were lightly wounded in the attack, one in the face and the other in the hand.

“With the identity that we currently have, it is a 30-year-old man who is not known for terrorist activities,” a spokeswoman for the prosecution service said, before the man’s death was announced.

AURORE BELOT via Getty Images
Policemen stand guard on the Boulevard Emile Jacqmain

The attack took place around 8.15pm local time. The man died after being rushed to hospital.

Brussels mayor Philip Close said the alert status, already just one off the maximum level, had not been increased.

“Initial indications are ... that it is an isolated attack, a single person,” Close told reporters beside a street blocked by police.

In addition to regular police, Brussels streets are being patrolled by soldiers due to a heightened security threat level in the wake of militant attacks in Paris and the Belgian capital in 2015 and 2016.

In June, troops shot dead a suspected suicide bomber in Brussels’ central train station but there were no other casualties, in what authorities treated as a terrorist incident.