The man who stabbed a Belgian soldier on Friday has been linked to ISIS, according to the terrorist group’s news agency.
Friday evening, a Belgian man of Somali origin rushed a group of soldiers near the Grand Palace in Brussels shouting “Allahu Ackbar” and stabbed one of them, before being gunned down by the others. The 30-year-old man died on the way to the hospital.
Authorities are investigating the attack as “an attempted terrorist murder” after ISIS claimed via its Amaq News Agency that he was a member of the global terrorist network, according to the SITE Intel Group, which monitors jihadi activity worldwide.
“The executor of the stabbing operation in Brussels is a soldier of the Islamic State and carried out the operation in response to calls for attacks against coalition states,” the Amaq report stated in reference to the U.S.-led coalition fighting ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
ISIS also claimed responsibility for two recent attacks in and near Barcelona, Spain, that killed a total of 15 people and injured more than 100 others.
The man was born in Somalia in 1987, before relocating to Belgium in 2004. He became a Belgian citizen just two years ago.
Police found a knife, a replica firearm, and two copies of the Quran on his person.
Belgian authorities on Saturday launched twin investigations into the incident, according to Reuters. The first investigation will cover the assailant’s relationship with ISIS while the second will focus on the conduct of the soldiers.
— SITE Intel Group (@siteintelgroup) August 26, 2017
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