Belgium Anti-Terrorism Raid Foils Imminent Attack

TIME

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The deaths of two terrorist suspects in a gun battle between Belgian police and members of a suspected jihadist cell on Thursday confirms mounting fears that the small European nation is facing a disproportionally high risk of attacks from Islamist extremists returning from Syria.

Police and special forces who conducted the early evening raid in Verviers, a town near the German border, were acting on information that a terrorist cell comprised of people who recently returned from the Syrian battlefield were plotting an imminent strike, said Eric Van der Sypt, a spokesman for the federal prosecutor, at a news conference.

The assault on the property, one of around a dozen raids across Belgium on Thursday night that targeted suspected jihadists, comes the week after 17 people were killed in attacks at the office of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and a kosher supermarket in Paris. But Van der Sypt noted…

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