Expatica news

Inquiry into Antwerp Islamic terrorism warning

27 July 2005

BRUSSELS — There is reportedly an organised group of dozens of Muslim extremists currently active in the Pakistani community in Antwerp.

The extremists transfer hundreds of thousands of euros per year to suspicious groups or accounts in other countries.

Belgian security services are concerned that the group aims to carry out terrorist attacks.

The claims were made by daily newspaper ‘Het Laatste Nieuws’ on Wednesday.

However, the newspaper also said co-operation between the various security services currently falls short of the mark.

It means the suspects are not actually being held under surveillance.

The revelations stem from recent terrorism warning issued by a councilor with the Antwerp social security office OCMW, Marco Laenens.

The councilor discovered that dozens of Pakistani social security recipients frequently travel back to their country of origin.

The travels occur despite the fact the refugees — who have been granted asylum in Belgium — claim their safety is at threat in Pakistan.

When Laenens was questioned by the federal police force’s anti-terrorism unit on Friday 22 July, it was revealed that an investigation was launched in 1992 into the actions of Pakistani extremists in Antwerp.

Authorities now hope to quickly determine whether there is a link between the Pakistani suspects and the asylum seekers receiving social security benefits.

The Investigation will determine if the asylum seekers have been sent to terrorist training camps.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news