Paris attacks suspects’ provisional detention extended by Brussels council chamber
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    Paris attacks suspects’ provisional detention extended by Brussels council chamber

    The pre-trial detention of four men linked to the Paris and Brussels terror attacks has been extended. Credit: © Belga

    Four terrorist suspects have seen their pre-trial detention extended by a Brussels trial court as part of the investigation into the 2015 Paris attacks, federal prosecutors announced Thursday.

    Prosecutors said the council chamber of Brussels ordered the detention of Ossama Krayem, Sofien Ayari and Mohamed Abrini to be prolonged by two months, and by one month for the third detainee, named as Adis A.

    All four men are suspected of links with the terror cell which orchestrated the terrorist attacks that struck Paris and Brussels in less than a year.

    Both Krayem and Abrini took part in the 2016 Brussels attacks, in which coordinated bomb attacks at Brussels Airport and the Maelbeek metro station killed 32 civilians and left hundreds more injured. Krayem was also linked to the Paris attacks after his DNA was found in the apartments used by the assailants.

    Abrini, detained in Brussels on 2016 confessed to being the “man in the hat” seen in security footage from the airport leaving behind a bag of explosives. He was also seen in security footage at a Paris gas station with Salah Abdeslam, a central suspect of the attacks in Paris.

    Abdeslam and Ajari (who is also known as Amine Choukri or Monir Ahmed Alaaj), were arrested on March 18 in Brussels, only four days before the attacks on the Belgian capital.

    Ajari’s fingerprints were also found in the various hiding places of the terror cell in Belgium, including in Brussels, Charleroi and in Auvelais, near Namur.

    The fourth man, Adis A., was recently brought to Belgium under an extradition warrant after his arrest in Germany. He is suspected of belonging to the terror cell and of having supplied the weapons used in the attacks in Paris.

    If the four men appeal the chamber’s decision, they will appear within fifteen days before the pre-trial chamber of the Brussels Court of Appeals.

    Krayem, Abrini and a third suspect had also seen their pre-trial detention extended as part of the investigation into the Brussels attacks in July.

    Gabriela Galindo
    The Brussels Times