Federal, Brussels and Antwerp police units will take part in an international and EU-funded training program to take down dangerous drones by trapping them with nets, Antwerp’s mayor announced.
“Our corps has been selected to fight dangerous drones together with Brussels police and the Romanian National Guard,” Antwerp Mayor Bart De Wever said in an interview with broadcaster Antwerp 2.
De Wever said that the program would involve Belgian police drones, “like Roman gladiators,” trapping and neutralising potentially dangerous drones by throwing a net over them.
“We have no indications of concrete threats with drones in Antwerp,” De Wever said, adding that the possibility that “terrorists” would use the devices “could not be ruled out.”
“[Drones] are fast, agile and can get anywhere,” the mayor said.
The training program, listed in EU Commission documents as training to counter unmanned aerial vehicle, has been dubbed “Skyfall,” and will run until December 2020 with an allocated budget of €1 million.
The program will beef up the aerial security arsenal of Antwerp police, which already have drones equipped with heat-detection cameras, with additional units capable of disabling airborne drones from a distance.
“Those new drones will be able to switch off other drones from the air, for example, by jamming or disrupting the signal of other drones,” De Wever said.