November 2015 – BELGIUM – Turkish authorities arrested three people with suspected ties to ISIS in last week’s terrorist attacks in Paris, CNN Turk reported Saturday. It identified one of the suspects as Ahmet Dahmani, 26, a Belgian national of Moroccan descent, who allegedly scouted target sites for the Paris attacks. He was arrested at a hotel in Antalya, CNN Turk reported. Two other suspects, Syrian nationals Ahmet Tahir, 29, and Mohammed Verd, 23, were arrested after they traveled from Syria to meet Dahmani, authorities said. The two were going to transport him to Syria, authorities said. Meanwhile, the Belgian capital of Brussels was put on the country’s highest terror alert level Saturday, with authorities warning of an imminent threat.
The warning, from the Crisis Centre of the Belgian Interior Ministry, cites “a serious and imminent threat that requires taking specific security measures as well as specific recommendations for the population.” It advises the public to avoid places where large groups gather — such as concerts, sporting events, airports and train stations — and comply with security checks. The city’s underground metro service will not be running Saturday and other public transit will be operating on a limited schedule, the ministry said. As news of the warning spread, Belgian authorities said they arrested one person Friday as part of investigations into the deadly November 13 Paris attacks.
The arrest happened in the impoverished Brussels suburb of Molenbeek. The person’s home was searched, and a few weapons were found, but no explosives, Belgium’s federal prosecutor’s office said. No further information about the arrest was released. Referring to Brussels’ alert level, Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel said then authorities’ prime objective is to reduce the number of large events in order to free up police officers to secure Brussels. Michel added that “given the large number of people” taking the subway, the Crisis Centre of the Belgian Interior Ministry recommended that service halt until Sunday afternoon, when the next evaluation takes place. Outside of Brussels, the rest of the nation will maintain its current terrorism level. –CNN