Just a day after a terrorist attack in London that left 4 people dead and 40 injured, the police in the Belgian city of Antwerp arrested a man on suspicion of driving at a crowd.
The suspect has been identified to be a French national of North African origin, according to the officials. A car was driven “at high speed” on De Meir, the northern city’s main shopping street, before it was intercepted.
The authorities discovered knives, a non-lethal gun and some unidentifiable liquid in the car, prosecutors say.
Belgian PM Charles Michel praised the authorities for an “outstanding job”.
“The vehicle was driving at high speed on De Meir,” said Antwerp police chief Serge Muyters. “Our army colleagues spotted it and tried to bring the vehicle to a halt.
“But the driver broke free and drove through the red light towards the port quays. The suspect, a man of North African origin, was immediately arrested,” he said.
Rapid response by the police prevented a terrorist attack just a day after Belgium marked the first anniversary of the twin bomb attacks in Brussels, that killed 32 people and wounded more than 300.
Fears of new terrorist threats across Europe have intensified after a series of attacks in Germany, France and Belgium.