Expatica news

Belgium detains 15 in Afghanistan, Iraq ‘jihadist’ probe

Belgian police detained around 15 people in Brussels on Tuesday in connection with a probe into an Iraq and Afghanistan war recruitment drive, after a separate raid in an unrelated terror investigation.

Federal police conducted 17 searches in homes across the Belgian capital in a pre-dawn operation aimed at “dismantling a group with terrorist characteristics,” the prosecutor’s office said in a statement.

A spokeswoman for the prosecutor’s office told AFP that “around 15 people” were detained.

The arrests followed a three-year investigation into people connected with a Belgian Islamic centre, the prosecutor’s office said. Foreign police services cooperated in the probe.

Some of the people arrested are suspected members of a group that recruited would-be “jihadists” volunteering to fight in Iraq or Afghanistan, the statement said.

Authorities announced earlier the arrest of 11 people in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany as part of an investigation into a Chechnya-linked Islamist network plotting to attack Belgium.