Belgian and German police have arrested two men suspected of planning terror attacks, with the incidents believed to be linked to the conflict in Gaza. In Belgium, a 23-year-old Palestinian asylum seeker named Mohammed A. was apprehended in the municipality of Anderlecht, near Brussels. The arrest came after the suspect allegedly threatened to carry out a terror attack and expressed a desire to “die like a martyr by explosion.” The man had recently learned that his family had been killed in the Israeli assault on Gaza.
In Germany, a 29-year-old man named Tarik S. was arrested in the city of Duisburg. He was suspected of planning a terror attack by driving into a pro-Israel demonstration with a truck. Tarik S., also known as “Osama al-Almani,” had previously joined ISIS in Syria in 2013 and returned to Germany three years later. He was arrested and sentenced to five years in prison for belonging to ISIS.
The recent arrests highlight the rising threat of Islamist terrorism in Europe following the Gaza-Israel conflict. Western intelligence agencies have warned about the potential for radicalized individuals to carry out acts of violence. Both Al Qaida and ISIS affiliates have issued calls for their supporters to launch attacks.
These arrests are the latest in a series of terror-related incidents in Europe. Last week, a Tunisian failed asylum seeker shot and killed two Swedes in Brussels before being fatally shot by the police. The gunman, Abdesalem Lassoued, claimed inspiration from ISIS and cited revenge in the name of Muslims as his motive. French authorities have since arrested two individuals in connection with Lassoued, as part of an investigation into a suspected “criminal terrorist conspiracy.”
Additionally, a British newspaper reported that an asylum seeker had carried out a suspected terror attack in the UK as an act of vengeance for Gaza. However, specific details of the attack are being withheld for legal reasons.