Allocution of the Minister-President of the Brussels-Capital Region, Rudi Vervoort


BRUSSELS, Belgium – At the meeting of the Regional Security Council on March 22, 2016, Minister-President of the Brussels-Capital Region, Rudi Vervoort, said:

Words are meaningless to express our emotion today. What we endure again today is the abject violence of terrorism.

A violence that will never weaken us. We are determined to fight it, for the citizen of Brussels, for the Belgians and Europeans who live and work in our capital every day.

A meeting of the Regional Security Council was already planned this morning in the context of the Regional Plan for Security and Prevention, and notably the fight against radicalism.

Considering this morning event, this meeting has been postponed this afternoon and enlarged to all the District Mayors (Bourgmestres) as well as the Minister of Mobility and the Secretary of State in charge of Emergency Medical Response.

As you know, the terrorist attack of the airport was followed of a second attack, in the metro station Maelbeek. All stations have been immediately closed and the network shut down.

Since November, an unprecedented set of measures has been taken. All the resources of the various authorities to limit the terrorist threat on the territory have been mobilized.

The Brussels-Capital Region is closely associated to the meetings of the National Crisis Centrum. We are committed to ensure the transmission of information and decisions with all local authorities in Brussels.

The threat level is maintained at level 4, nationwide.

However, and I insist on this: There will be no lockdown of Brussels this time.

– Regarding the subway (metro) we work with federal authorities (regarding the security capacity) to partially reopen the network as soon as possible, especially the lines 2 and/or 6;

– Regarding the surface transportation network, the night shift (Noctis) as well as the tramway will be reopened as soon as possible, and in any case this Tuesday;

– Regarding the schools, the Wallonia-Brussels Federation and the Flemish Community had been informed since the beginning of the situation. It is important to underline that there is no specific threat against schools according to the threat evaluation. However, excursions have been prohibited during the day and the exit of the schools will be organized. The objective is of course to maintain a normal life as soon as this Wednesday, march 23.

РRegarding high concentrated venues around cultural or sport events, as well as touristic sites, only today’s event will be cancelled.

– Regarding public malls and public markets on the regional territory, security measures are taken both by their managers and the authorities, in order for life to get back to normal as soon as this Wednesday morning.

– Regional and Communal public administration will be open as soon as this Wednesday morning.

Naturally, beside those decisions, the District Mayors (Bourgmestres) will enforce on their territory the necessary complementary administrative measures.

The next Regional Security Council will be held as soon as necessary, and we will proceed to the monitoring of the situation hour by hour with all relevant authorities.

The time is now for grief. It is first of all dedicated to all the victims and their families. We send them our thoughts.

We also want to say our pride to see the solidarity movement by the citizen of Brussels: This is the true face of Brussels.