Belgian schools on alert following online threat
Schools and day care centres near Brussels were under police guard on Wednesday after an apparent threat was posted on a US Internet site, local authorities said.
Hundreds of police were deployed in Mechelen after the message was posted in January on the website www.4chan.org reading: "293 days to go until I strike at KTA Lyceum Mechelen, watch the news."
More than 330 police officers wearing bullet-proof vests were deployed early on Wednesday morning, the date believed to correspond to the threat and symbolic for its 09/09/09 formulation, authorities said.
A police helicopter also flew over Mechelen, some 30 kilometres north of the capital Brussels, Belga news agency reported.
No incident has been reported and the prosecutor’s office will launch further investigations into the threat.
The identity of the person responsible for the threat on the discussion website has not been discovered despite a number of arrests in recent days.
Some Belgian media said the police operation had caused concern among some students and staff, who were not warned prior to the deployment to ensure that the operation would not be compromised.