A 37-year-old Chechen jihadi who fought in Syria wounded five guards at the Hasselt Prison on Wednesday, the delegate of the ACOD/CGSP union, which represents prison warders, said, confirming a report in Het Belang van Limburg newspaper. “The man has been transferred to Bruges prison,” ACOD/CGSP’s Kristof Muyters disclosed on Thursday. “He was known to be extremely aggressive and he proved it yesterday. The five guards involved in the incident were transferred to the hospital’s emergency section.”
The nature of the prison warders’ wounds was not immediately known but, according to Muyters, many of them were unable to work for a certain amount of time.
The assailant was detained in the prison’s high-security wing, where he was known as an unmanageable prisoner. He should normally have been admitted to the deradicalization department at Hasselt Prison but, due to Wednesday’s incident, which occurred during the distribution of meals, he has now been placed in a cell at the high-security unit of the Bruges prison for observation.
The union will address staff on Wednesday.
Prison warders say they have had enough of cost-saving measures in recent years that have reduced staff, thus affecting their safety.