Brussels Institute of Criminology hit by explosion

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A bomb exploded at the Brussels National Institute of Criminalistics and Criminology in the early hours of Monday, 29th of August, causing major damage to the building but luckily no casualties.

Local prosecutors have confirmed that there had been a blast at the institute, which is linked to the Belgian ministry of justice and handles forensic analyses related to police investigations, but assured the public that the building was empty and nobody was wounded in the incident.

According to media reports, a bomb was detonated near the laboratories in the northern Brussels suburb of Neder-Over-Heembeek and the blast ripped through the building at around 3 a.m. (01:00 UTC). Shortly before that, a car with two suspects in it had rammed through three fences and threw an incendiary device at it.

The cause of the explosion is still to be determined, but authorities say “it was probably not accidental.” However, there was no indication of terrorism.

“We are thinking more of deliberate arson by organised crime. We have no indications that it was terrorism,” prosecutor Ine Van Wymersch declared.a

Some 30 firefighters responded to the site and helped put out the ensuing blaze.

Belgium, as well as the rest of Europe, has been on high terror alert after the devastating Islamic State attacks on Brussels’ airport and metro that killed 32 people in March this year.