Riot at Merksplas prison: around a hundred prisoners transferred
Share article:
Share article:

Riot at Merksplas prison: around a hundred prisoners transferred

©Belga
©Belga

Calm returned to Merksplas prison at around 5.45am on Sunday morning, after a very busy night. The prison holds 600 prisoners. Several areas of the institution were damaged, and remain unusable. Around a hundred prisoners were transferred to others prisons, says Frank Wilrycx (Open Vls), the mayor of Merksplas. He again called for urgent investment in the prison. Two prisoners received medical attention.

“The night walk around took place at 7.30pm on Saturday, and 200 didn’t want to go back”, the mayor said. “Prisoners started fires, walls were torn down, windows were broken, and doors were forced open. Some of the blocks are unusable, and will be for several months”.

“I’ve never seen this before”, added Frank Wilrycx. “A fire was started when people were still in their cells. This is a serious offense, and there will no doubt be an investigation. Luckily, only two prisoners needed medical attention, for smoke inhalation”.

Federal and local police, backed by special intervention units, finally rounded up the rebelling prisoners in a corner of the walking zone, so they could take them all back at once.

Around a hundred prisoners were transferred to other prisons last night, as many cells were unusable. Calm returned at around 5.45am on Sunday.

This riot has nothing to do with the current strike in Brussels and Walloon prisons, which started 13 days ago. Prisoners want the authorities to listen to them more.

Mayor Wilrycx said he was very worried about last night’s events. He has been calling for more investment in the prison for a long time. “The prison is really old. It dates back to the 19th century. It needs urgent investment. I hope it will come soon”.

(Source: Belga)

Latest news

Will Brussels bounce back?
The lockdowns have tested the city and forced it to confront key questions about its future. Derek Blyth looks back at an extraordinary moment in our ...
Vaccinations: Belgium’s Health Minister currently not in favour of a general booster shot
The latest figures on new coronavirus cases are worrying, but rather than imposing new safety measures, what is needed is full compliance with ...
Thousands protest against the Covid health pass in France
Demonstrations against the health pass and other measures aimed at preventing the spread of the Coronavirus mobilised tens of thousands of protesters ...
Record-breaking 770-metre highline installed in Freÿr, Beglium
A 770-metre long highline was installed at an altitude of 70 metres at the Freÿr Rocks on Saturday, setting a new Belgian record, according to ...
Huge cannabis farm discovered inside closed down Chinese restaurant near Charleroi
A cannabis plantation with several hundred mature plants was dismantled on Friday evening in a former Chinese restaurant on Chaussée de Bruxelles ...
Citizen founded wind turbine project launched in Liège region
A citizen founded wind turbine project was inaugurated in the Liège Region on Saturday by Walloon Energy Minister Philippe Henry (Ecolo) together ...
Five questions to philosopher Philippe Van Parijs on Leopold II and embarrassment in Brussels’ public space
The worldwide explosion of the Black Lives Matter movement in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd, combined with the 60th anniversary of the ...
Belgium to invest in sustainable heating in 2022
The federal government will set aside about one million euros in its 2022 budget for a social tariff for sustainable heating, Federal Energy Minister ...
Anti-vaxxers demonstrate against Covid Safe Ticket in Brussels
Hundreds of supporters of the anti-vaxx movement gathered on Saturday outside the headquarters of the Pfizer pharmaceutical company to protest ...
Belgium’s investment funds total 260 billion euros in assets
Belgium’s funds industry grew by 5.3% (13 billion euros) in the second quarter of this year, bringing investment funds available to the public to ...
Brussels to Luxembourg by train in two hours soon possible
The fastest train ride between Brussels and Luxembourg currently takes almost three hours, but that could be slashed to about two hours thanks to the ...
Daily Covid infections up by almost 30% in Belgium
Between 6 and 12 October, an average of 2,438 people were infected with the Covid-19 virus every day, according to figures from the Sciensano public ...