Brussels Attacks: Terror in Europe - Live Blogs & Updates - ABCNews

Brussels Attacks: Terror in Europe

Three explosions were reported in two different sites in the Belgian capital Tuesday morning.

  • From ABC News' Becky Perlow in Washington, D.C.:

    Four Brussels Airlines employees were injured in today's explosions and are currently hospitalized, Brussels Airlines Vice President of External Communication and Spokesperson Geert Sciot confirmed to ABC News.

    All four people were working at a check-in counter at the time. The explosions didn't happen right in front of them, but near them.

    Operations at the Brussels airport will be closed tomorrow.

  • From ABC News' Benjamin Siegel and Alexander Mallin in Washington, D.C.:

    Top U.S. lawmakers believe terror suspect Salah Abdeslam's arrest on Friday accelerated the timetable for the bombings in Brussels.

    The attacks must have been "in the planning stages for months," said Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee.

    "I think if the cells thought that they may be under investigation, that could prompt them to carry them out more quickly,” McCaul said.

  • Onlookers stand at a security checkpoint at Brussels South railway following the series of explosions that killed 31 and injured at least 250. (Credit: Bas Bogaerts/De Morgen/Polaris)

  • Dramatic footage shows the aftermath of the explosion that went off at the Brussels airport Tuesday morning. Debris is shown scattered throughout the building as the remaining people inside, some still carting their luggage, make their way out. (Credit: YouTube/ Aris Saja)

  • From ABC News' Brian McBride in New York:

    Chalk drawings expressing hope and solidarity filled a Brussels plaza after a series of explosions at the airport and a metro station killed 31 and injured at least 250.

    Click here to read more.
  • Belgians and tourists gathered outside a Brussels square to write chalk messages of hope and solidarity following a series of terror attacks. (Credit: Geert Vanden Wijngaert/Getty Images)

  • From ABC News' Kirit Radia in New York:

    The U.S. Department of State has issued an alert cautioning U.S. citizens of the potential risks of traveling to and throughout Europe after the Brussels terror attacks.

    Terrorist groups continue to plan near-term attacks throughout the European continent, the State Department said. The travel alert will expire June 20.

    The State Department also advises U.S. citizens abroad to exercise vigilance when in public places or using mass transit and cautioned Americans to avoid crowded places.
  • The ABC News live blog is now closed for the evening. Please check abcnews.go.com for continuing coverage on the Brussels terror attacks.
  • Belgian officials have given an update on the ongoing investigation in the wake of the deadly explosions in Brussels on Tuesday.

    The manhunt for the only suspect from the Belgian terrror attacks is believed to be alive and on the run.

    Here is a roundup of the latest information:

    - Latest death toll is at least 31 people dead and 260 others injured from both the airport and the train station

    - Three suspects pictured at the Belgian airport before the blast. One of those men, seen wearing a light colored jacket, is the one who remains at large

    - Only one of the three men pictured -- the one in the center of the photo -- has been identified by police; the man who has been identified is the brother of the subway suicide bomber

    - A taxi driver came forward to police and said that he had driven the three suspects to the airport. The driver then directed police to the house where he had picked them up

    - Police have searched five different locations after the attacks

    - Two people were arrested as a result of those searches, but one was released. The other is being interrogated
  • The man in the center of this photo has been identified as the brother of the subway bomber. The man on the right is at large. (Credit: Belgian Federal Police/AFP/Getty Images)

  • What We Know About the Attackers

    The man in the middle of the airport surveillance footage has been identified by Belgian prosecutors as Brahim El-Bakhraoui. He was born in Belgium. 

    His brother Khalid El-Bakhraoui was the subway suicide bomber. He had criminal records and though the charges were not released publicly, they were not terror-related, the prosecutor said. 

    In a subsequent raid of the house where the taxi driver had picked up the three suspects to go to the airport, police found a written note from Brahim El-Bakhraoui. 
  • From ABC News' Lee Ferran, Josh Margolin and Brian Ross in New York:

    Experts who analyzed the surveillance footage released by police said that it appeared the so-called "man in white" may have been a "handler" for the two suicide bombers.

    "You have him dressed a little differently, and you have him wearing a hat and you have him wearing glasses... It is enough that it causes it to be harder to identify the person," said former FBI New York counter-terrorism chief Rich Frankel, now an ABC News consultant.

    "He could be the person who brings them to the airport. He could be the individual who makes sure they actually carry out the attack, or if they are not able to carry out the terrorist attack, he’s able to spirit them away or advise his terrorist cell that it did not take place."

    Read more about the suspected attackers here.
  • #Brussels airport was supposed to re-open tomorrow but will remain closed. #BrusselsAttacks
  • Belgian officials released a few more details about Ibrahim El-Bakhraoui, the one airport suicide bomber who has been identified so far. 

    He was born on October 9, 1986, making him 29 years old at the time of the attack. 

    He was identified using fingerprints, officials said. 

    Investigators were able to find a written statement by him outside the apartment building where the taxi driver picked them he and his co-conspirators before taking them to the airport. 

    The note reads:

    “In my haste, I don’t know what to do. Being hunted everywhere, no longer safe and if I sneeze I risk ending up next to him in a cell” 


    It is unclear who El-Bakhraoui is referring to in the note. 
  • Ibrahim El-Bakhraoui, a 29 year old Belgian-born man, has been identified as one of the two alleged suicide bombers at the Brussels airport. (Credit: Belgian Federal Police)

  • One of the three American missionaries injured in the airport bombings is now in a medically-induced coma and will remain there "for the next few days," his family said in a statement released today.

    Richard Norby, 66, is originally from Lehi, Utah and was serving in the Paris, France mission. He and two fellow American missionaries were dropping off a French missionary at the airport at the time of the attack.

    "He sustained several wounds from the shrapnel, second degree burns to his head and neck area, along with more severe trauma from shrapnel to his lower leg," Norby's family's statement said.

    "After a lengthy surgery he was placed in a medically-induced coma, and will remain in this state for the next few days, with a lengthy recovery expected."
  • From ABC News' Ely Brown in Washington:

    U.S. State Department deputy spokesman Mark Toner has given an update on the number of Americans who may have been hurt during Tuesday's attacks.

    "At this time, we are aware of approximately a dozen U.S. citizens injured in the attacks," Toner's statement said.

    "At this time, we are not aware of any U.S. citizen deaths.

    "‎We must emphasize that a number of U.S. citizens remain unaccounted for and the Kingdom of Belgium has not yet released nationality information for reported fatalities. Our own internal U.S. government accountability is ongoing, and we are making every effort to account for the welfare of both Chief of Mission personnel and U.S. citizens in the city."
  • WATCH: "I'm one of the lucky ones." Eyewitness to #Brussels airport attacks speaks out. snpy.tv/1UFmLHp

  • From ABC News' Mary Bruce:

    In opening remarks at his joint press conference with President Macri in Buenos Aires, President Obama reaffirmed his vow to “go after ISIL aggressively” until it is destroyed.

    "Today the people of the US and Argentina stand with the Belgium people and express our extraordinary sorrow for the losses they’ve experienced. We understand the pain they’ve experienced viscerally because we have felt the scourge of terrorism," Obama said.

    Obama to take questions shortly. More to come…
  • Obama now, explaining part of the reason why there have been fewer attacks in the U.S. is because Muslim-American communities are integrated.

    "They do not feel ghettoized, they do not feel isolated. Their children are our children's friends," he said.
  • Belgian police carry out bags of evidence from a house in the district of Anderlecht-Brussels, during a police search, Brussels, March 23, 2016. (Credit: Christophe Petit Tesson/EPA)

  • From ABC News' Jon Williams in New York:

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says one of the Brussels attackers was caught in Turkey in June and deported to Belgium.

    Erdogan says Wednesday that the Belgian authorities released the suspect despite Turkish warnings that he was "a foreign fighter."

    Erdogan did not name the attacker or identify which blast site the suspect was associated with.

    He said the man was detained at Turkey's border with Syria at Gaziantep and that Turkey formally notified Belgian authorities of his deportation on July 14. E

    Erdogan says "despite our warnings that this person was a foreign terrorist fighter, Belgium could not establish any links with terrorism."
  • From ABC News' Sarah Kolinovsky who is traveling with Sec. Kerry:

    State Department spokesman John Kirby said Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Brussels on Friday.

    The trip was arranged to "formally express the condolences of the United States for the loss of life in yesterday's terrorist attacks, and to meet with Belgian and European Union officials,: Kirby said in his statement.

    Kerry will be traveling to Brussels from Moscow.
  • New clarifications have been made about the note investigators found that belonged to one of the two airport suicide bombers.

    Ibrahim El-Bakhraoui’s note was described by Belgian prosecutors as being a "testament" and was found on a laptop in a trash can on the same street as the apartment the trio was picked up from earlier that day.

    The note included mentions of 'being in a rush,' 'no longer knowing what to do,' 'being sought everywhere,' 'no longer being safe,' and that if he takes too much time, he risks finishing his life 'next to him' in a jail cell," the official said.
  • A man reacts at a street memorial following Tuesday's bomb attacks in Brussels, March 23, 2016. (Credit: Francois Lenoir/Reuters)

  • From ABC News' Jordyn Phelps:

    During the rest of the press conference this morning in Argentina, President Obama responded in-depth to the criticism he’s received for pressing on with his foreign trip in the aftermath of the Brussels attack.

    He explained his belief that the fight against ISIS is about more than going after terrorists and destroying their networks. It’s also about sending a message that “they can’t defeat us.”

    “We defeat them in part by saying you are not strong, you are weak. We send a message to those that might be inspired by them to say you are not going to change our values of liberty and openness and the respect of all people,” Obama said..

    “A lot of is going to be saying ‘you don’t not have power over us’ we are strong our values are right, you offer nothing except death,” he said.
  • Turkish officials are now saying that President Erdogan "mis-spoke" earlier when he said that the bombing suspect that had been previously detained in Turkey was sent back to Belgium, according to The Associated Press.

    There are now reports he was sent to another country but no further details have been confirmed.

    We will update once we have confirmed news.
  • J'assure la chère population belge, toutes les familles des victimes et tous les blessés, de ma prière et de ma proximité.
    I wish to assure the dear people of Belgium, all the families of the victims, and all of those injured of my prayers and spiritual closeness.
    Assicuro la mia preghiera e la mia vicinanza alla cara popolazione belga, a tutti i familiari delle vittime e a tutti i feriti.
    Aseguro mi oración y mi cercanía a la querida población belga, a todos los familiares de las víctimas y a todos los heridos.
    #Bruxelles #Bruselas #Bruxelas #brussels

  • Update on one of the bomber's earlier detention in Turkey:

    Dutch & Turkish officials confirm to ABC it was Ibrahim El Bakraoui - one of the airport bombers - who was detained on the Syrian border in July and deported to the Netherlands, and not Belgium.

    Turkish authorities have confirmed that they did warn both Dutch and Belgian authorities that El Bakhraoui was a "foreign terrorist fighter."
  • A large crowd of people view tributes at Place De La Bourse in honor of the victims of yesterdays' terror attacks, March 23, 2016, in Brussels. (Credit: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

  • New details about the order of the events and when various parts of the deadly coordinated attacks occurred have been released. Here is a quick run-down:

    - Sometime Tuesday morning: a taxi driver picks up three of the bombers and brings them, and their three suitcases, to the airport

    - 7:58 a.m.: First explosion at the airport occurs, followed by a second explosion nine seconds later

    - 9:11 a.m.: Bomb goes off in the second car of a subway train as it pulls out of Maelbeek station in the center of Brussels

    - At around 4:00 p.m.: ISIS reportedly claims responsibility on an affiliated website

    Read more details about the chaotic day here.
  • Both of the bombs that went off Tuesday morning at the airport were in the departures hall, before any security checkpoints.

  • From ABC News' Aicha El-Hammar in Brussels:

    Belgian police officials released more information on the two brothers involved in the Brussels terror attacks.

    In October 2010, Ibrahim El Bakraoui, one of the two suspected suicide bombers at the airport attack, was sentenced to nine years in jail for a robbery in January of that year, in which he opened fire with a Kalashnikov rifle during a police chase. He was released in 2013.

    Police found multiple Kalashnikovs rifles during a search of the home of his brother, Khalid El Bakraoui, who is believed to be the suicide bomber who detonated an explosive in the metro car.

    An INTERPOL Red Notice on Khalid says he was wanted by the Belgian authorities for charges of “terrorism.” It is unclear when the INTERPOL notice was posted and there does not appear to be one for his brother.
  • From ABC News' Lee Ferran and Aicha El-Hammar:

    Belgian authorities believe they have identified the third suicide bomber in the Brussels attack as Najim Laachraoui, a 24-year-old who has been sought by police since the Paris attacks in November, three Belgian law enforcement officials told ABC News.

    The officials said that evidence indicates Laachraoui is the man in dark clothes on the left in a surveillance photo from the Brussels airport showing three of the four alleged Brussels attackers. The man in the middle, identified earlier today as 29-year-old Ibrahim El-Bakraoui, was also a suicide bomber. The man on the right, in the lighter clothes, has yet to be identified and is still on the run, Belgian officials said.

    A wanted posted featuring Laachraoui and posted online shortly after the Paris attacks says that Laarchraoui’s DNA was found in a rented house in a Brussels suburb and an apartment in central Brussels’ Schaerbeek neighborhood – locations a Belgian prosecutor said Monday “was used by the terrorist group” in the Paris attacks. International media reports said that Laarchraoui’s DNA was also found on two of the suicide belts used in the November Paris attacks. Officials told ABC News he is suspected of being the terror cell’s bombmaker.

    Authorities said Laachraoui had left for Syria in 2013 and in September 2015, two months before the Paris attacks, an individual using one of Laarchraoui’s aliases was spotted in a car with Paris attacks suspect Salah Abdeslam on the border between Hungary and Austria. Abdeslam was arrested in Belgium Friday.

    Read more here
  • Najim Laachraoui, a 24-year-old who has been sought by police since the Paris attacks in November, is believed to have been the other suicide bomber at the airport. (Credit: Belgian Federal Police)


  • From ABC News' Avianne Tan and Carlos Boettcher:


    A makeshift memorial at the Place de la Bourse in Brussels is seen in a 360-degree view filled with hundreds of people who gathered to pay tribute to the victims of the terror attacks.


  • A teddy bear is seen at the Place De La Bourse in Brussels, where a massive crowd gathered in honor of the victims killed in the terror attacks. (Credit: Patrik Stollarz/AFP/Getty Images)

  • David Muir is anchoring "World News Tonight" live from Brussels with the latest on the terror attacks starting at 6:30 p.m. EST.

    TONIGHT: @DavidMuir anchors #WorldNewsTonight LIVE from #Brussels -- the manhunt on after Tuesday's terror attacks. pic.twitter.com/VXTUrjWt2Z

    — World News Tonight (@WNTonight) March 23, 2016

    Watch the broadcast by clicking here
  • King Philippe of Belgium and and Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel attend a ceremony outside of a terminal at the Brussels airport. (Credit: Frederic Sierakowski/Reuters)


  • From ABC News' Molly Hunter in Brussels:

    Despite the rain, candles continue to flicker at an ever-growing makeshift memorial honoring the victims of the terror attacks.

    Tonight in #Brussels, the crowd keeps growing. pic.twitter.com/Kb13amnRcF

     Molly Hunter (@mollymhunter) March 23, 2016
  • A man wears the Belgian flag as people observe a one-minute moment of silence at the Place De La Bourse in Brussels to honor the victims of the terror attacks. (Credit: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)


  • From ABC News' Erin Dooley in Washington, D.C.:

    U.S. Airports are on edge following the terror attacks in Brussels.

    At Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport this morning, screaming passengers scattered when a bomb-sniffing dog alerted a bag. Some were under the mistaken impression that there was an active shooter in the terminal.

    Areas in airports like ticket counters and lobbies, which are not secured by the TSA, are notoriously difficult to protect, said former FBI special agent Richard Frankel, who is now an ABC News consultant.

    Read more about air travel in the wake of the terror attacks by clicking here.
  • A man displays an emotional reaction as hundreds attend at a makeshift memorial in Brussels honoring the victims of those killed in a series of explosions Tuesday. (Credit: Francois Lenoir/Reuters)

  • From ABC News' Benjamin Siegel in Washington, D.C.:

    The Brussels bombers may have targeted Americans, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Devin Nunes, R-California, told reporters on Capitol Hill Wednesday.

    “From my vantage point it does look like an attack on Americans," Nunes said.

    To support his claim, Nunes said the location of the explosions at the airport were next to the check-in counters for U.S. airlines United, Delta and American. He also said the metro bombing occurred right by the U.S. Embassy.

    On Tuesday, Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-California, a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, also said he believed the attackers targeted Americans.

    Read more by clicking here.
  • Two men in Brussels reach to write in chalk on a makeshift memorial wall in honor of the victims of the terror attacks. (Credit: Valentin Bianchi/AP Photo)


  • Europe remains on high alert following a series of explosions in Brussels that killed 31 and injured at least 270.

    Click here to view a slideshow of security efforts throughout Europe in response to the terror attacks.
  • Turkish police and a K-9 dog search luggage at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, Turkey. (Credit: Sedat Suna/EPA)

  • A woman and children embrace as they mourn for the victims of the bombings at the Place de la Bourse in the center of Brussels. (Credit: Martin Meissner/AP Photo)

  • The ABC News live blog is now closed for the evening. Please check abcnews.go.com for continuing coverage on the Brussels terror attacks.
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