State security warns against extreme right-wing civilian guards
Monday, 20 August 2018
Belgian State Security warns of a potentially new and worrying phenomenon in the country: extreme right-wing civilian guards in cities and municipalities that patrol to protect civilians against refugees. Justice Minister Koen Geens (CD&V) warned of “several dozen” radical right-wing individuals, who may be ready to use violence, according to the Sudpresse newspapers.
Minister of Justice Geens says in an answer to a parliamentary question if, since the attacks of Paris and Brussels in 2015 and 2016, the security services in Belgium and other countries have noticed an increase in the number of right-wing extremist activists and their activities. The State Security authorities estimate that in this country several dozen right-wing extremist activists might be ready to use violence or to break the law on the basis of their ideology.
The extreme right-wing activists are reckoned to be not only active in cities such as Antwerp, Brussels, Ghent, Mechelen and Charleroi, but also in rural areas in East and West Flanders, Limburg and Liège.
In addition, State Security is observing right-wing extremist civil guards, who patrol the streets with the self-declared goal of “protecting the local population” against refugees. During his answer in parliament, Geens made a reference to an attack by six members of the extreme right-wing French-speaking party Nation on a Polish homeless man in Brussels.
As one of its basic responsibilities, State Security has to keep an eye on this extremist issue, which includes the extreme right and extreme left.