Antwerp suffers new wave of drug-related violence
Attacks on a local restaurant have been the latest example of a surge of drug-related violence in Antwerp. The port city in Flanders has become the main entry point of cocaine in Europe in recent years, and has seen an increase in crime since.
The latest attacks happened in the district of Borgerhout, where a restaurant was attacked three times in two weeks. The building was fired upon with a gun, set on fire and targeted by an explosion. Two suspects were arrested by local police, and no one was hurt.
The building is linked to Jamal B.S., a Belgian-Moroccan kickboxer who was arrested last year during 'Operation Sky', a large scale wire tapping operation of encrypted phones by Belgian and Dutch police. The Federal Judicial Police is investigating the case, and possible links to the drug scene.
In the past few weeks, several other attacks have been reported in the vicinity of the city. Homes in Borgerhout, Merksem, Berchem and Borsbeek were shot at or targeted with explosives. Several suspects were arrested.
© BELGA PHOTO JONAS ROOSENS