The man suspected of shooting dead two Swedish soccer fans in Brussels on Monday night was shot dead by police officers on Tuesday morning.
The Belgian police searched all night for the suspect in the north of Brussels before police officers finally cornered him and opened fire on him.
He later succumbed to his wounds.
“The perpetrator of the terrorist attack in Brussels has been identified and is dead,” Annelies Verlinden, Belgian Minister of the Interior, announced on social media.
“Our thanks go to the intelligence and security services and the public prosecutor’s office for their swift and decisive action last night and this morning.”
Alexander de Croo, the Belgian prime minister, said earlier this morning that the suspect is of Tunisian origin and was living in the country illegally.
“The terrorist attack that took place yesterday was committed with total cowardice. The attacker chose two Swedish football fans as a target,” De Croo said during a media conference.
RNews reported earlier today that the attack took place shortly before a football match between Belgium and Sweden. The two victims were wearing soccer shirts from the Swedish national team when an armed man opened fire on them with an automatic rifle in the city center before the soccer match.
A third person – a taxi driver – was seriously wounded during the attack.
The attacker – identified as 45-year-old Abdesalem L – fled on a scooter after the attack.
Vincent van Quickenborn, Belgian Minister of Justice, said the suspect is a man whose asylum application failed and who was earlier found guilty of “violations of common law” in Tunisia.
However, Van Quickenborn denies that the suspect was listed as a known terrorist threat.
Yet in a post on social media after the murders, the suspect boasted that the Islamic State (IS) had inspired him.
— Paul Golding (@GoldingBF) October 17, 2023