by Wu Changrong, Zhang Yunlong
Belgian police on Monday issued a new appeal for information about “the man in the hat” caught on security camera footage along with two others thought to have blown themselves up in the Brussels Airport on Tuesday last week.
March 22, 2016 saw the deadliest terrorist attack ever in Belgium’s history, with terrorist blasts hit the Brussels Airport and then the Maelbeek metro station near the European Union institutions during moring rush hour.
Victim death toll rose 35 after four people succumbed to their injuries in hospital, Belgian Minister of Health Maggie De Block said on Monday.
“Medical teams did all possible… Courage to all the families.” the minister wrote on Twitter.
Belgian federal prosecutor’s office in a Monday statement said Faycal C., identified by media as Faycal Cheffou and previously referred to by reports as “the man in the hat” wanted for the airport blast, was released without charge.
“The clues that had led to the arrest of Faycal C. were not supported by the progression of the current investigation,” the statement said.
The man was arrested on Thursday last week along with two other people outside the building of the Belgian federal prosecutor’s office and was charged on Saturday with “terrorist murder.” No weapons or explosives were found during a search at his home.
The releasing of airport camera footage on the mysterious man in the hat again on Monday meant that the third suspect is still on the run.
“Police are trying to identify the man. He is suspected of having committed the attack at Zaventem Airport Tuesday, March 22, 2016,” Belgian federal police said in a post on their official website.
Two other men appearing in the airport camera footage had been identified as suspected suicide bombers Najim Laachraoui and Ibrahim El Bakraoui. The latter’s brother, Khalid El Bakraoui, was identified as the suicide bomber at the Maelbeek metro station.
Several people have been arrested during anti-terror raids in Belgium, France, Germany and Italy since the Brussels suicide bombings for which the Islamic State claimed responsibility. Enditem