Fight at Flemish asylum centre leaves five injured

Fight at Flemish asylum centre leaves five injured
The asylum centre in Berlaar where the incident occurred. Credit: Jonas Roosens/Belga.

A fight left five people injured at an asylum centre in the Flemish municipality of Berlaar on Wednesday evening. Among those injured, one had to be brought to a nearby hospital with a broken jaw.

The local police were called to the scene after two groups clashed over a stolen phone. However, once arrived, they had to call in reinforcements from the federal police, who managed to have the situation under control by 04:00.

As a result, police will now remain at the centre on Thursday morning with the incident's instigators having been temporarily removed from the centre.

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The centre, located in former military barracks and managed by Red Cross, had been made available to asylum seekers last year by the Defence Ministry. 

However, it is already said to be reaching maximum capacity, according to Berlaar's mayor Walter Horemans, who concluded that "it is quite a primitive reception centre."

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