Brussels, April 9 (IANS) Mohamed Abrini, suspected of involvement in the November 2015 attacks in Paris, was arrested Friday by the Belgian police, reported Belgian broadcaster RTBF.
Abrini is also thought to be the “man in the hat” who was caught on surveillance cameras at Zaventem Airport on the morning of the Brussels attacks little over two weeks ago, Xinhua quoted the local media as saying.
Abrini was wanted for complicity in preparing the attacks in Paris. His DNA was found in an apartment in the Brussels’ district of Schaerbeek, from which suicide bombers left to carry out the March 22 twin attacks.
According to RTBF, a second person was also arrested. It could be Osama K., the person seen with suicide bomber Khalid El Bakraoui at the Brussels metro station Petillon, shortly before El Bakraoui set off an explosion at Maelbeek metro station.
Osama K. is also thought to be the second person who bought at City 2 shopping centre the suitcases used in the attacks, RTBF added.
However, the Belgian federal prosecutor confirmed only two arrests, without specifying their names, Belgian daily L’Avenir reported.
Dual Belgian-Moroccan national Abrini had been filmed at a gas station in Paris two days before the November 13 bombings, along with Salah Abdeslam. Since Abdeslam’s arrest, Abrini has become one of the most wanted suspects linked to the terrorist attacks in Paris.
The November 13 attacks in Paris killed 130 people. The March 22 Brussels attacks claimed the lives of 32 people.