Police have arrested four people at the Maximilien Parc in Brussels. Police officers arrested four people at the Maximilien Parc, situated next to the North train station, in the capital on Monday. The arrests were reported in a message posted to the Facebook page of Mehdi Kassou, a spokesperson for the volunteer-run refugee aid group Plateforme de soutien aux réfugiés.
At the height of the refugee crisis in 2015, the Maximilien Parc functioned as an unofficial migrant camp with hundreds of undocumented asylum-seekers spending the night there at one point. The migrant camp was broken up by the police in 2015, but smaller numbers of migrants continue to camp there every night.
The arrests apparently followed from complaints about noise and cleanliness from neighbourhood residents. When police arrived at the scene to investigate the complaints, they asked everyone present to leave the park. Those that refused to do so, were arrested.
A spokesperson for the Brussels-Ixelles police district confirmed the arrests to the French-language news site BX1. “The police officers asked the people on site to leave the premises after gathering their affairs. Four people did not comply; they were arrested,” said spokesperson Ilse Van de keere.
Linda A. Thompson
The Brussels Times