Belgium authorities killed two jihadi suspects today in what they said was the foiling of a “major imminent attack” by a terrorist cell in the country.
No police or members of the public were hit during the dramatic firefight, and a third suspect was taken into custody during the Verviers raid.
“During the investigation we found that this group was about to commit terrorist attacks in Belgium,” prosecutor Eric Van der Sypt told media.
“During the search warrant in Verviers, certain suspects immediately opened fire with automatic weapons at special forces of the police. They opened fire for several minutes before being neutralized,” he said.
“The investigation is still going on and you can understand that we cannot give any further information.”
Reports later Thursday indicated that Belgium authorities had launched 10 anti-terror raids across the country.
White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters that the story was too new for comment.
“I’ve seen those reports, but I don’t have anything to say about them at this point,” Earnest said during the daily briefing. “But later on today we may be able to get you something.”
Per capita, Belgium has contributed more foreign fighters to the conflict in Iraq and Syria than any other Western country.