BELGIUM: BELGIAN SPECIAL FORCES STORM HIDEOUT OF AN ARMED SUSPECTED ISLAMIC MILITANT (GIA) MEMBER
- Title: BELGIUM: BELGIAN SPECIAL FORCES STORM HIDEOUT OF AN ARMED SUSPECTED ISLAMIC MILITANT (GIA) MEMBER
- Date: 5th March 1998
- Summary: BRUSSELS, BELGIUM (MARCH 5, 1998) (RTV ACCESS ALL) 1. SV OF POLICE AND HOUSE 0.09 2. LV POLICE ESCORT OLD WOMAN INTO CAR 0.18 3. LV POLICE TAKE FAMILY TO SAFETY 0.26 4. SLV RIOT POLICE OUTSIDE HOUSE 0.42 5. LV SHOTS HEARD, POLICE ENTER BUILDING 0.55 6. LV/SLV POLICE ESCORT SUSPECT CONCEALED BY BLANKET TO AMBULANCE POLICE ESCORT SUSPECT CONCEALED BY BLANKET TO AMBULANCE (2 SHOTS) 1.17 7. SV/MCU PROSECUTOR BENOIT DEJEMEPPE CONFIRMS GUNSHOTS WERE FIRED BUT NO ONE WAS WOUNDED (FRENCH) (2 SHOTS) 1.45 8. MCUSV INTERIOR MINISTER JOHAN VANDE LANOTTE SPEAKING TO REPORTER, SAYING THE BESEIGED MAN WAS BELIEVED TO BE AMONG THOSE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE 1995 PARIS METRO BOMBING AND THOSE BEING HELD WERE BELIEVED TO BE A SIGNIFICAN ELEMENT WITHIN THE ALGERIAN ISLAMIST GUERRILLA NETWORK IN EUROPE (ENGLISH) (4 SHOTS) 2.29 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Reuters ID: LVA8P9EZPDEKT742IPTS5MGT4AZE
- Location: BRUSSELS, BELGIUM
- Country: Belgium
- Duration: 00:02:29
- Story Text: Belgian special forces have stormed the hideout of an armed suspected Islamic militant, ending a siege that had lasted more than 12 hours.
The operation began before dawn on Thursday (March 5) as paramilitary gendarmes and special forces raided the house in Brussels and arrested six suspected members of Islamist fundamentalist group GIA who are believed to have been involved in bombings in Paris.
The seventh man, tentatively identified by the interior ministry as Feri Melouk, a Frenchman of Algerian origin who has been condemned in his absence by a Paris court to seven years in jail, took refuge in the attic of the house in the Ixelles quarter of the Belgian capital.
Hours of negotiations followed, but police described the gunman as determined.The area was evacuated and marksmen took up positions around the house.
Reporters heard a volley of shots, an ambulance was brought forward and a few minutes later police escorted a man away from the scene.
Brussels public prosecutor Benoit Dejemeppe confirmed to reporters that shots had been fired during the arrest of the suspected Algerian guerrilla after the day-long siege but he was not wounded in the process.
Earlier, Belgian Interior Minister Johan Vande Lanotte said the besieged man was believed to be among those responsible for the Paris metro bombing in 1995.
Speaking after police had arrested six people at the central Brussels house, but before the final assault, he said those being held were believed to be a significant element within the Algerian Islamist guerrilla network in Europe.
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