A Belgian man threw grenades and fired on a crowd at a bus stop in Liege at noon local time Tuesday, injuring dozens, including a 2-year-old girl, and leaving four people dead. The suspected attacker, identified as 32-year-old author Nordine Amrani, reportedly committed suicide immediately after the attack. Amrani was previously jailed after drugs, weapons and sexual abuse convictions.
Earlier reports that there were two other attackers have now been discredited. Follow live updates below:
Update, 12 p.m. EST/6 p.m. CET:
AP reports that Amrani was on his way for police questioning when he launched the attack. He is confirmed to be the lone gunman, and launched three grenades in the attack. It is still unclear whether Amrani committed suicide or died by accident.
Update, 11 a.m. EST/5 p.m. CET
Belgian TV station RTL.be has interviewed a witness (in French), who says he saw Amrani kill himself:
The AP reports that the dead include a 15-year-old boy, a 17-year-old girl, and a 75-year-old woman. The 2-year-old girl who is injured is in critical condition.
Update, 10 a.m. EST/4 p.m. CET:
A Belgian official says the attack is unrelated to terrorism, or to any court case in progress.
Update, 9:20 a.m. EST/3:20 p.m. CET:
Belgian news site Lesoir.be has identified the suspected attacker who died as 32-year-old Nordine Amrani, an author who was previously sentenced to 58 months in prison for possession of weapons and cultivation of cannabis plants.
More information has also emerged about the second fatality, a 16-year-old boy who died after being taken to the hospital.
Belgian police report that the situation is now “under control.” A press conference has been announced for 4 p.m. local time.
Update, 9:00 a.m. EST/3:00 p.m. CET:
Belgians are being advised to take cover, as the third gunman fired shots and police chased him through the city center.
Belgian news site HLN.be reports that three armed men escaped from the city courthouse just before the attack.
Pakistani Twitter account Karachi Post claims the attack was linked to a sentence in an honor killing case. (Officials later said the case was in no way linked to the attack, and the Karachi Post admitted they used the attacks as efforts “highlighting the evil of honor killing.”)
Update, 8:30 a.m. EST/2:30 p.m. CET:
Emergency services are at the site. The center of Liege — a historic city one hour’s drive from Brussels and two hours from Paris — is completely closed. The attack occcured at noon local time on Saint-Lambert square, a busy thoroughfare that is home to the town's courthouse and a Christmas market. The attacker fired gunshots from atop a bakery.
Belgian TV station RTL.be has this video report:
AP has footage of the chaos in the city center:
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