Antwerp building evacuated after explosion in suspected grenade attack
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    Antwerp building evacuated after explosion in suspected grenade attack

    The explosion took place in a building near Melkerijstraat in municipality of Wommelgem. Credit: Google Street View

    An apartment building in the province of Antwerp had to be evacuated after it was rocked by an explosion early on Tuesday, which authorities are saying could have been caused by a hand grenade.

    The explosion took place around Melkerijstraat in the municipality of Wommelgem, located near Antwerp airport, in the night from Monday to Tuesday, with authorities speaking of reports of a loud bang at around 4:30 AM.

    The DOVO mine clearance unit came to the apartment building and officers and lab agents from the federal police were also deployed on-site, Het  Nieuwsblad reports.

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    Local police on Tuesday morning said that the explosion could have been caused by a hand grenade thrown at the building, according to Le Soir, adding that the entrance to the building was damaged by the blast.

    “It’s an apartment building with five accommodation units,” Johan Wonnink of the local police zone told the Flemish outlet. “The entrance hall has been damaged, the exact damage will probably become clearer in the day.”

    No one was injured by the explosion, which is one of several reported in Antwerp and the surrounding municipalities and thought to have been caused by hand grenades thrown at properties in a suspected drug-related conflict.

    Gabriela Galindo
    The Brussels Times