High Alert in Place Across Europe Following Raids


Countries across Europe are on high alert following anti-terror raids and the arrest of a number of suspected Islamist militants.  Over 20 people in Belgium, France and Germany were arrested after Belgium joined France in sending troops to work with the police.

A number of countries have tightened their security following the deadly attacks in Paris last week that resulted in 17 deaths.  There are also increasing concerns about young Europeans who have been fighting with Middle East militants returning to the countries of their birth.


In Belgium, five people were charged yesterday with ‘participating in the activities of a terrorist group’ after the police carried out a series of raids that left two suspects dead.  Along with guns, munitions and explosives, police uniforms were discovered amongst a large stash of money in the raids.

The prosecutor’s office spokesman, Eric Van Der Sypt, said that the evidence pointed to the suspects planning to kill several policeman in the streets and also in the commissariats, Belgian police stations.  13 people had been arrested but so far only five look to be facing charges, while the country was also seeking to extradite two suspects currently held in France.

Belgian government officials had announced new measures to deal with suspected terrorists on Friday including making travelling aboard for terrorist activities a crime and looking to expand the cases where citizenship of the country can be revoke for those holding dual citizenship and who pose a risk.


So far, there has been no links found between those arrested in Belgium and the attacks in Paris last week but the French Prime Minister, Manuel Valls, said that despite this, both the countries were facing the same threat, an attack on their values.

Twelve suspects have been arrested in connection with the Paris attacks that left 17 people dead.  Raids have been carried in across five towns and those arrested are being questioned about proving ‘logistical support’ to the gunmen, including weapons or vehicles.

France remains on its highest level of alert and authorities have said that there are around 120,000 police and soldier mobilised across the country.  In an unrelated incident, Gare de l’Est train station was shut down on Friday in Paris after a bomb scare.

Wider reaction

The events have also had a knock-on effect across Europe.  Spain started an investigation into one of the Paris gunmen, Amedy Coulibaly, who travelled to Madrid just a few days before the attacks on the French capital.

In Germany, police have arrested two men after raids on 11 properties that involved over 250 officers.  Among those arrested was a man thought to be the leader of an extremist group of Turkish and Russian nationals.  Police said that they had indications the group were planning violence in Syria but nothing seemed to be planned for Germany itself.


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