Four wounded in incidents outside the Turkish Embassy in Brussels
Friday, 31 March 2017
Four people were injured during attacks on the Turkish embassy in Brussels on Thursday afternoon. Three of them were stabbed but are not fatally wounded. A fourth was later injured in a fight that broke out after the attacks, said Navbel, the council of the Kurdish community in Belgium, on Friday.
Incidents broke out Thursday in front of the Turkish embassy, located on rue Montoyer in Brussels. There is a polling station for the referendum to strengthen the presidential powers in Turkey. A violent assault took place in the afternoon. The situation was still very tense an hour later. The police managed to separate the two groups, consisting of about ten Turks and Kurds. An auto-pump was dispatched to the scene but it was not used.
A judicial investigation was opened. It is not known at this time whether the police carried out arrests.
The incidents took place, while Turks residing in Belgium can vote from 27 March to 9 April in the consulates of Brussels and Antwerp (north), in a referendum on a constitutional reform that would strengthen the powers of President Erdogan. The vote is scheduled for 16 April in Turkey.
According to NavBel, the incidents were provoked by four people armed with knives: “A group of four Belgian Turks attacked the Belgian Kurds, who came to vote for the referendum in Turkey, with knives. This was fifth aggression suffered by people of the Belgo-Kurdish community. Prime Minister Charles Michel said that no external problems should be imported into Belgium, but both the those attacked and the aggressors are local people and the state Belgian must take these attacks seriously”, said Delil Agbaba, spokesman for Navbel.
Police presence will be reinforced around the Turkish embassy in the coming days.