terrorist Attacks in Brussels Leave Numerous Dead, Cause City Shut Down
what we know
??Three explosions--two at an airport and one at a subway station--killed 31 people and wounded 300�others on Tuesday.
ISIS has claimed responsibility for the bombings, and three suspects were photographed by airport security cameras. Two of them were identified as brothers Ibrahim el-Bakraoui, 29, and Khalid el-Bakraoui, 27.??Anyone with information on the attacks has been asked to call investigators at 0800 30 300.�?TheBelgian Crisis Centerhas created a phone number for people outside the country to find out information about their loved ones. To request information, call 327-815-1771.
Signing off for the nightUPDATE 5:10 p.m. ET, March 24, 2016
?We will be taking a break from live updates this evening. For updates on breaking news, follow us on Twitter [email protected]? or visitThe New York Times live blog.???belgium lowers threat level�
UPDATE 3:00 p.m. ET, March 24, 2016
?Belgium lowered its security threat level from a maximum level 4 to a 3 late this afternoon. This means that a possible and probable threat is high, but no longer very serious and imminent.?
The military will maintain a visible presence on roads, railway stations, and the subway, but there will be less searches of bags at the entrance to railway stations and subways, according to the Benelux Chapter of ASIS International.
The lowered threat level will also encourage more shops to open and all offices, even those near the European Union zone, will discontinue telework.Brussels airport to remain closed until sunday
UPDATE 2:04 p.m. ET, March 24, 2016
The Brussels Airport will remain closed with no passenger flights in or out of the airport until Sunday, March 27, according to a tweet posted to its Twitter account.
?While passenger flights in and out of the airport are suspended, it has begun a return operation for passengers who left their luggage at the airport on March 22--the day of the bombings.
Currently, passengers can retrieve hand luggage and checked-in luggage from certain aircraft that were on the tarmac at the moment of the bombings.�
For information on how to claim luggage left at the airport, visit the Brussels Airport website portalhere.?????ASIs international expresses support for belgium
?UPDATE 1:30 p.m. ET, March 24, 2016
Following this week's tragic events in Brussels, ASIS International released the following message of support for the people of Belgium and an update on its plans for its upcomingASIS�15th European Security Conference & Exhibition in London.
Our thoughts continue to be with the people of Belgium and everyone affected by the recent terror attacks. We are thankful that our Brussels staff are safe.
Now more than ever, the sharing of security knowledge and best practices is needed�and the ASIS 15th European Security Conference & Exhibition, 6-8 April in London, UK, will be a key platform for delivering the education, insights and access to technology necessary to mitigate the terrorist threat.
The security of the event and its attendees is of utmost concern to us and in the days and weeks ahead we will continue to gather information about the threat level, assess and monitor the situation. ASIS Europe 2016 attendees should know that in addition to our regular comprehensive security plan, we are in routine contact with our security advisors in the UK, counterterrorism authorities, local law enforcement, as well as the venue�s security team to ensure all necessary precautions are taken.�
Please continue to visit this website daily for new information. If you wish to contact us directly, please reach us at [email protected] or +32 2 318 5751.
FBI director: Brussels attack could deter isis recruitment
?UPDATE 12:19 p.m. ET, March 24, 2016
The Brussels attacks may have a reverse effect on ISIS recruitment, said FBI Director James Comey in an appearance this morning.�
"When people? see images of men, women, and children slaughtered around the world, it reinforces that the Islamic State is not engaged in some heroic battle," Comey explained. This realization, Comey added, could result in a decrease in the number of people traveling from the United States to the Middle East to join ISIS.
Comey made an appearance this morning with U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch to announce charges against Iranian hackers forattacks against the U.S. financial sector.
During their statement, Comey reiterated that there are currently no connections between the Brussels attacks and attackers and the United States. But that it's "something we're looking at very, very closely, though," Comey added.
"Any time there's a terrorist attack overseas, we immediately focus on two things in the states: are there any connections to the United States? And are there any risks to any of our subjects in the United States to see it as a copycat opportunity?"
Currently, Comey said the FBI has not seen those connections but is continuing to monitor the situation.prime minister rejects belgium ministers'? resignations
?UPDATE 12:00 p.m. ET, March 24, 2016
Belgian Interior Minister Jan Jambon and Justice Minister Koen Geens offered to resign their posts, but Prime Minister Charles Michel declined their offers.�
Michel asked Jambon to stay on as "in time of war, you cannot leave the field," Jambon said,according to Reuters.??
Belgian authorities are facing questions after Turkey announced yesterday that it expelled Ibrahim el-Bakraoui, one of the suicide bombers, and warned Belgium that he was a militant.�
"You can ask how it came about that someone was let out so early and that we missed the chance to seize him when he was in Turkey," Jambon said in an interview about his offer to resign. "In the circumstances, it was right to take political responsibility."????today in brussels
??UPDATE 10:13 a.m. ET, March 24, 2016
What's it like on the ground in Brussels today? Public life was expected to resume as much as possible, according to a debriefing by the Benelux Chapter of ASIS International that was shared with Security Management.
There was no lockdown in Brussels today with schools open and trains, trams, and buses resuming some service. However, there are security checks for all modes of transportation and some subway stations will remain closed.�
The police and military troops are continuing to check luggage of travelers on the subway in Brussels. This has caused some of the time tables to be changed, and access to the underground system will only be available until 7 p.m. local time tonight.
The Brussels Airport is still closed and�is expected to remain closed through tomorrow. One sign of progress, however, is that all emergency accommodations at the airport have now been closed as a solution was found to accommodate? and transport stranded travelers, the chapter said.�
The airport is open for the movement of air cargo. But cargo that's scheduled to be shipped on passenger aircraft should find alternative routes to Brussels, the�Transported Asset Protection Association (TAPA) shared with the chapter.?�
Shops in Belgium are open, but for the first time in history many are operating with security checkpoints at shop entrances with pat downs and luggage searches. One retailer doing this is IKEA, which already has the practice in place for its locations in Paris, according to the chapter.
Tightened border controls are still in place along the Belgian, Dutch, and French borders, and traffic jams are expected during peak commuting hours.�
The chapter is recommending that people avoid public transportation modes and instead attempt to carpool through Monday, March 28,�if traveling in Brussels.�
Looking into next week, Monday will be a bank holiday for Belgium and schools will be closed from March 26 until April 10 for the holiday season.SIGNING OFF FOR THE NIGHT
UPDATE 5:18 p.m. ET, March 23, 2016
We will be taking a break from live updates this evening. For updates on breaking news, follow us on Twitter [email protected]�or visitThe New York Times live blog.??ap: isis trains 400 fighters to target europe
UPDATE 5:10 p.m. ET
?ISIS has trained at least 400 fighters to target Europe in deadly waves of attacks, deploying terror cells like the ones that struck Brussels and Paris "with orders to choose the time, place, and method for maximum carnage," the Associated Press (AP) reports.�?
Officials--ranging from European and Iraqi intelligence officials to a French lawmaker--who spoke to the AP described camps in Syria, Iraq, and possibly the former Soviet bloc where attackers are being trained to attack the West.�
"The network of agile and semiautonomous cells shows the reach of the extremist group in Europe, even as it loses ground in Syria and Iraq," according to the AP.
?????????state department issues travel alert
UPDATE 4:00 p.m. ET?
The U.S. State Department issued aEurope Travel Alert?, urging U.S. citizens to "exercise vigilance when in public places or using mass transportation" as terrorist groups continue to plan near-term attacks throughout Europe targeting sporting events, tourist sites, restaurants?, and transportation.
"Be aware of immediate surroundings and avoid crowded places," said the alert, which expires June 20, 2016. "Exercise particular caution during religious holidays and at large festivals or events."
The alert also recommends that U.S. citizens traveling abroad should:Follow the instructions of local authorities, especially in an emergency.Monitor media and local information sources and factor updated information into personal travel plans and activities.Be prepared for additional security screening and unexpected disruptions.Stay in touch with your family members and ensure they know how to reach you in the event of an emergency.Register in our Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
??mourners gather in brussels
UPDATE 3:40 p.m. ET
Tributes continue to pour in from across the globe and Brussels itself as mourners observe three days of national mourning in Belgium.
??The Belgian Crisis Center has designated the military hospital in Neder-Over-Heembeek (NOH) as the central place to support families of victims of yesterday's attacks.�
"The concerned parties are invited to visit the NOH hospital where they will be greeted by representatives from medical, police, and defense, and the competent judicial authorities," the center said in astatement on its website.???transportation problems persist in brussels
UPDATE 2:57 p.m. ET
?Transportation in and out of Brussels remains a problem today with no flights in or out of Brussels Airport today, tomorrow, or Friday.�
"Because the forensic investigation is still underway, we currently have no access to the building," the airport said in astatement posted to its website. "Until we can assess the damage, it remains unclear when we can resume operations.�
Railway stations are open and operating in the city, but there are very long delays to enter stations, according to a debriefing on a bridge call between the Benelux Chapter and France Chapter of ASIS International that was shared with Security Management.�
Travelers can expect delays on trains from Brussels because at the entrance and exit of railway stations there are checkpoints? to check luggage.
Police and deployed military troops are also checking luggage on Brussels' subway system lines that are operating. Currently, Metro line 2 (Simonis-Elisabeth) and�Metro line 6 (Koning Boudewijn-Weststation) and the system between those two lines are closed. Instead, busses are operating to transport individuals in this area for the time being.??secretary kerry to visit brussels
UPDATE 2:00 p.m. ET
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Brussels on Friday to express condolences for the victims killed in yesterday's attacks.
?While in Brussels, Kerry will also meet with Belgian and European Union officials, according to a tweet by State Department Spokesperson John Kirby.
???Kerry is currently in Moscow for meetings with Russian leaders on Syria and Ukraine.???Obama says defeating islamic state is top priority
UPDATE 1:57 p.m. ET
President Barack Obama's top priority is to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), he said in a statement today.�
"My top priority is to defeat ISIL and to�eliminate the scourge of this barbaric terrorism? that's been taking place around the world," Obama said in an appearance with Argentine President Mauricio Macri.
?"There's no more important item on my agenda than going after them and defeating them. the issue is, how do we do it in an intelligent way?" Obama asked, explaining that the United States will continue to adjust it's approach of air strikes and attacks on ISIL's leaders, infrastructure, and financial support.?
"We are going to continue to press on them until we've driven them out of their strongholds and until they're destroyed," Obama said.
??attackers may have displayed tell-tale indicators
UPDATE 11:28 a.m. ET
The attackers in yesterday's bombings at Brussels Airport may have been displaying tell-tale indicators (TTI) that could have warned of a potential attack, according to ASERO Worldwide.�
For instance, one of the suspects in the attack was wearing a hat and sunglasses, which may suggest he was attempting to hide his appearance as he is not suspected to have been a suicide bomber.
"It is important to note that an attempt to cover ones face or appearance, including a hat or sunglasses, may be a tell-tale indicator that can be detected by professionally trained security personnel," ASERO explained in analysis shared with Security Management.�
ASERO is a team of international security experts that provides advice to governments and businesses on how ?to mitigate their security risks in the wake of increased terrorist activities at home and around the world.
The two suspected suicide bombers in the airport attack were also only wearing gloves on their left hands, which ASERO said could be considered an irregular or TTI.
"Once additional CCTV video footage is made available to the public, it may be possible to identify further indicators relating to the suspects' behavior," ASERO added. "Identification of TTIs is an invaluable early detection tool of potential malicious intent."
In response to the Brussels attacks, ASERO recommends that security forces be trained in detecting irregular appearance, behavior, documentation, and other indicators that may point to malicious intent.�
"These skills will help to not only create deterrence? and possible identification of a threat prior to initiation, but can also detect pre-attack reconnaissance activities," ASERO said.
TTI detection can be carried out by all on-hand airport personnel--both security and non-security employees.�
"While only some workers will deal directly with passengers, all have some level of interaction with the passengers as they pass through airport areas and terminals, enabling them to detect behavioral anomalies, irregularity of appearance, and other suspicious indicators," ASERO explained. "Effectively utilizing all available personnel from both the security and non-security communities not only acts as a force multiplier by adding eyes on the ground, but also improves overall security by incorporating those workers into the people screening process directly.
For more on TTIs and how they can be detected, read our December 2015 cover story onidentifying suicide bombers.??UK enhances security posture
UPDATE 11:00 a.m. ET
?The United Kingdom is beefing-up its security posture in response to the Brussels attacks, according to information forwarded to Security Management by ASIS International staff in Brussels.
In London, the Metropolitan Police Service has mobilized additional officers to carry out highly visible patrols at locations around the capital, including the transportation network, according to a Counter Terrorism Protective Security Update sent as part of the UK's Cross-Sector Safety and Security Communications.
"The number of officers deployed will be regularly assessed," the update explained. "These additional officers are deployed as part of reassurance measures. As ever, our security measures will be constantly reviewed."
UK police and security and intelligence services are also working in close liaison? with Belgium authorities to monitor the situation in Brussels. UK police have asked any UK nationals or media in Brussels that may have footage of the incidents to come forward and assist in the investigation.
"Police in the UK have activated an online platform where images and videos can be uploaded, which could provide important information for the investigating authorities," the update explained.
These images can be uploaded to the platform by visiting this link:www.ukpoliceimageappeal.co.uk.??belgian prosecutor confirms attackers identities
UPDATE 10:40 a.m. ET
Belgian federal prosecutor�Fr�d�ric Van Leeuw released new details on the Brussels attacks in a press conference today. You can watch the press conference, in full, inthis video by RT. However, Van Leeuw's remarks are in French and Dutch.?
A translation of the key facts? by The New York Times into English confirms that the first explosion yesterday occurred at Row 11 of the Brussels Airport departure hall at 7:58 a.m. The second explosion occurred 9 seconds later in Row 2.
Ibrahim el-Bakraoui, identified by his fingerprints, carried out one of the airport explosions and is the middle person in an image of three suspects taken from surveillance video at the airport.
??In that photo, the suspect wearing white was carrying a bag with explosives. That device, however, was not ?detonated and was later handled by a bomb-disposal crew.
A taxi driver tipped off the police, who later raided a home on 4, rue Max Roos, in the Schaerbeek neighborhood of Brussels. Police found 15 kilograms of the explosive material TATP, 150 liters of acetone, 30 liters of hydrogen peroxide, detonators, a suitcase full of nails and screws, and other materials. They also found, in a trash can on the same street, a computer with Ibrahim el-Bakraoui's will on it.
Van Leeuw also confirmed that as a subway train was leaving Maelbeek station, a bomb went off in a second car. Khalid el-Bakraoui, who was identified by fingerprints, set off the bomb.??on the ground in brussels
UPDATE 10:20 a.m. ET
What's the scene like on the ground in Brussels today? The Benelux�Chapter of ASIS International shared information on its latest debriefing call with Security Management early this morning to give us an idea.
The Coordination Unit for Threat Analysis (CUTA) has left Belgium's threat level at 4--the highest level--which means there is evidence of a new attack. New anti-terror measures, however, have not immediately been issued.
Instead, the chapter said military presence at public roads and railway stations has increased. Belgium is also strengthening border controls with neighboring countries. The borders are open, "but you will be confronted with ID control and LONG delays!!!" the chapter emphasized.
Additionally, the Belgian postal system is not delivering letters or parcel through air via the Belgian Post Office (BPOST) as the Brussels Airport remains closed.�
And for the workforce, companies can currently�invoke temporary unemployment for"force majeure,"? the chapter said. This can be invoked if the execution of a work contract is impossible.�
Under temporary unemployment, employees are entitled to if they're cohabitating with dependents a minimum of 44.25 euros and a maximum of 62.44 euros, living alone a minimum of 37.39 euros and a maximum of 62.44 euros, and cohabitating a minimum of 28.04 euros and a maximum of 62.44 euros.??brussels attacker was wanted by interpol
UPDATE 10:10 a.m. ET
?One of the Brussels attackers--Khalid el-Bakraoui--was wanted by INTERPOL prior to yesterday's attacks.�
INTERPOL issued ared alert? for Khalid el-Bakraoui in August 2015, which said he was wanted by the judicial authorities of Belgium on terrorism charges. The alert also said that he was born on January 12, 1989, spoke French and Arabic, and had dual Belgian and Bahamian nationality.�??brothers identified as brussels attackers
UPDATE 10:00 a.m. ET
?Authorities have identified two of the Brussels attackers as brothers with criminal records. Khalid el-Bakraoui, 27, and Ibrahim el-Bakraoui, 30, have been sought by police since a March 15 raid on an apartment in the Forest district of Brussels.�
Ibrahim el-Bakraoui and another man blew themselves up at the Brussels Airport in two separate explosions. Khalid el-Bakraoui then carried out the suicide attack at the Maelbeek subway station approximately an hour later.�
A third attack suspect has not been publicly identified and remains at larger with a warrant out for his arrest.�
?Authorities are searching for him, and Belgian news outlets reported that a police operation was underway in the anderlecht neighborhood of Brussels today. An arrest had been made, but the person's identity was not released.????signing off for the night
UPDATE 5:30 p.m. ET, March 22, 2016
We will be taking a break from live updates this evening. For updates on breaking news, follow us on Twitter [email protected],�visit the�AP'slive blogon the situation in Brussels,�or The New York Times.
?transportation hubs may be at risk for similar attacks
UPDATE 5:00 p.m. ET
Locations where different modes of transportation all come together may be at risk for a similar attack as to those seen�in Brussels, says a risk preparedness and security expert.
Mike Payne, organizational resilience manager for risk management firm iJET International, spoke with�Security Management�this afternoon about who might be at risk for an attack like today's in Brussels and what can be done to mitigate the threat.
Those at risk include "larger targets where different transportation systems tend to merge, creating a watering hole, if you will, for predatory aspects," Payne explains, such as airports and mass transit systems.�
Organizations tend to respond to this risk with a surge effort--deploying more security officers. But this can create its own problems, such as bottlenecks, which come with their own security risks of longer exposure periods for travelers to possible attacks.
To mitigate this threat, Payne recommends taking proactive measures to reduce exposure times.�
For example, when traveling to the airport Payne says use Pre-Check options, only take carry-on luggage so you can skip the check-in counter, or even consider sending baggage ahead to the airport so you don't have to drag it through the airport, slowing down your progress.
And given the current shelter-in-place recommendations for individuals in Brussels, Payne says travelers should plan to have sufficient quantities of water, food, and first aid to allow them to stay in place for up to 24 hours.�
"Here in the States, many people are prepared. But when they travel, they don't take or gather sufficient quantities of water, food, or first aid to take with them," Payne adds. "Given the events in Paris and Brussels and the shelter-in-place advisories, having that travel go-bag is important."??king philippe addresses Belgium
UPDATE 4:50 p.m. ET
?In a rare broadcast to the nation, King Philippe of Belgium addressed today's bombings and the state of the nation.
??"Mathilde [the queen] and I share your sorrow, you who have lost a loved one or who have been injured by the cowardly and odious attacks of today," the king said. "We express our full support for members of the emergency services and security services, and our gratitude to those who are spontaneously offering help. In the face of the threat, we will continue to respon