Brussels bombings five years on

Several events were held in Brussels on Monday to commemorate the victims of the terrorist attacks of 22 March 2016. The suicide bombings at Brussels airport and the Maelbeek metro station, which IS admitted to carrying out, killed 32 people and injured 340. The trials of the suspects who survived are scheduled to begin in September.

Open/close all quotes
La Libre Belgique (BE) /

Dignity instead of pity

The judicial system must not lose sight of the victims, La Libre Belgique urges:

“No one is seeking revenge. But everyone expects justice to be done and the truth to be uncovered. ... The main culprits are presumed to be dead and will not be present. But they will be judged. Victims do not need pity, but dignity. ... They want to believe in humanity and look to the future. It would be a tribute to them if the recommendations of the parliamentary committee of inquiry into the attacks were followed in full, as they are based in part on the victims' sense of having been left in the lurch - by the complex administration, the insurance companies, and, more generally, by the Belgian state, which was unprepared to face such a disaster.”

Le HuffPost (FR) /

Covid rules play into extremists' hands

Terror prevention measures in their current exclusively digital form are losing sight of too many young people, political scientist Sébastien Boussois worries in Huffpost:

“How long can we go on with online raising of awareness? The question arises in view of the fact that radicalisation always exploits the niches between people: between our young people and institutions, between young people and their families, between young people, with all their hopes, and reality. Meanwhile, the IS and extremist groups of all kinds continue to gain ground. ... The social distancing as a result of the Covid epidemic could have much worse consequences for us in the coming years than the distancing for health purposes which has been painstakingly implemented for a year.”