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4 killed in suspected terror attack in Belgium's Liege

May 29, 2018 19:12 IST

IMAGE: A man is being consoled on the scene of a shooting in Liege, Belgium, on Tuesday. Photographs: Francois Lenoir/Reuters

A gunman on Tuesday shot dead two police officers with their own weapons before killing a bystander in a suspected terror attack in Liege, Belgium, briefly taking a hostage at a school before being killed by the police.

Both police officers killed in the attack were women.

The attack began around 10.30 am (0830 GMT) when the man, armed with a knife stabbed two police officers repeatedly before using their own firearms to kill them, local media quoted prosecutors as saying.


Federal prosecutors said they had launched a terrorist investigation into the incident, which comes with Belgium on high alert after a string of attacks including twin suicide bombings in Brussels in 2016 claimed by the Islamic State group.

"Armed with a knife, the suspect followed and attacked two police officers, and used their own firearms to kill them," prosecutor Philippe Dulieu told reports at a press conference.

"He continued on foot, attacking a parked vehicle where he opened fire on a 22-year-old man in the passenger seat. The young man died.

"He then continued and entered the Leonie de Waha school. He took a woman working there as hostage. Police intervened, he came out firing on the police officers, wounding several before he was killed," Dulieu said.

IMAGE: A police officer on the scene.

According to Belgian broadcaster RTBF, the shooter was released from prison yesterday and was only known for minor infractions with no known links to extremism.

Belgian Interior Minister Jan Jambon said Belgium's Federal Crisis Centre was monitoring the situation.

'Our thoughts are with the victims of this horrible act. We are in the process of establishing an overview of exactly what happened,’ Jambon wrote on Twitter.

A major security cordon was set up around the area, while panicked parents came to collect their children from the school complex.

The governor of Liege province said all the children and staff were safe and unhurt.

Belgium has been on high alert since the smashing of a terror cell in the town of Verviers in January 2015 that was planning an attack on police.