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Bank accounts of 295 terrorists in Belgium frozen

Illustration image. Credit: Belga

The bank accounts of 295 terrorists are currently frozen in Belgium in an effort to prevent them from (aiding in) committing an attack.

During 2021, 21 measures were taken to freeze assets, based on figures from the Coordination Office for Threat Assessment (OCAD), according to La Capitale.

“These measures are reviewed every six months,” Sofie Decoster of OCAD said.

This action, which can be done after consultation with various services, is taken as part of the office’s fight against terrorism in the country, which explained that freezing financial resources is one of the ways to prevent terrorists from going ahead with planned attacks.

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Another administrative measure that can be taken to dislodge terrorists is the refusal or non-renewal of passports. Currently, some 29 people who are considered to be a terrorist risk in Belgium no longer have a passport following intervention by the OCAD, meaning they cannot travel outside the EU.

In exceptional circumstances, identity cards are also withdrawn, declared invalid or not renewed, which means potential targets cannot travel within the EU. Last year, the OCAD left just one person without an identity card.

The OCAD analyses and evaluates the terrorist and extremist threat levels in Belgium. The general threat level, which is indicated on a scale of one to four based on the severity and probability of the threat, is currently average, as this figure sits at two.

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