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Belgium: Suspected Assassin of Swedish Football Fans Killed in Police Operation

Updated17. October 2023, 2:29 p.m

Belgium: Abdesalem Lassoued is dead – one of his victims lived in Switzerland

After the fatal shots at two Swedes in Brussels, the suspected assassin was still on the run. He is said to have been shot during a police operation on Tuesday.

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Abdesalem Lassoued is the suspected assassin. He is said to have shot two Swedish football fans in the Belgian capital Brussels.


The crime occurred shortly after 7 p.m. near Place Sainctelette in the north of the Belgian capital, immediately before a European Championship qualifier between Belgium and Sweden at the King Badouin Stadium in Brussels.


The fans in the stadium reacted with shock to the news.

Getty Images

That’s what it’s about

Abdesalem Lassoued is the suspected attacker in Belgium.

The 45-year-old Tunisian is said to have killed two football fans; one of the victims is said to have had a Swiss passport.

Lassoued had become radicalized and was known to the secret service.

The suspect, Abdesalem Lassoued, was neutralized in a cafe in Brussels. The police received a call that the 45-year-old was sitting in a café in Schaarbeek. When the police arrived there was a shootout in which the Tunisian was shot, it was initially said. The weapon used in the attack was found next to him. It was initially said that he was taken to a hospital.

Interior Minister Annelies Verlinden later informed that the man had died. Verlinden told radio station VRT that the suspect was shot by police. The weapon that he probably used was confiscated.

One victim was a Swede with Swiss residence

The FDFA is aware of a Swedish citizen residing in Switzerland who was a victim of the attack on Monday evening in Brussels, according to a request from 20 Minutes. For data and privacy protection reasons, no further information can be provided, the FDFA continued.

The Belgian authorities previously said that a Swiss identity card was said to have been found next to the victim. The other fatality was also a Swede. Another Swede was seriously injured. “The deceased and the injured person are two men in their 60s and 70s,” the Foreign Ministry told Aftonbladet.

A confessional video is circulating online

Investigators said that a confessional video was circulating on online services in which a man spoke in Arabic. He therefore claims to be a member of the terrorist organization IS. In another video published on the website of the Flemish newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws, the alleged shooter, wearing an orange neon jacket, can be seen shouldering an automatic weapon and driving away on a scooter. At least four shots can be heard at the same time.

In the confession video, the man stated that he killed the Swedes because of their nationality, said the spokesman for the Federal Prosecutor’s Office, Eric Van Duyse, on the LN24 channel. In the summer, several desecrations of the Koran in Sweden sparked outrage in the Islamic world. According to Justice Minister Vincent van Quickenborne, the 45-year-old is a rejected asylum seeker.

Macron speaks of an “Islamist terrorist attack”

Prime Minister De Croo called on the residents of the Belgian capital to be vigilant. He was in the national crisis center together with the Minister of Justice and the Minister of the Interior, he explained in the online service

Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billstrom said he was “shocked by the news that two Swedish football fans were murdered in Brussels this evening and a third person was seriously injured,” and stressed that Swedish authorities were working closely with Belgian authorities to find the killer to find. The seriously injured person also has Swedish citizenship.

French President Emmanuel Macron spoke of an “Islamist terrorist attack” and said that Europe was “shocked”. “A few minutes ago, Brussels was hit again by an Islamist terrorist attack, which apparently (…) cost the lives of at least two other Europeans, two Swedes,” said Macron on Monday during a state visit to Albania.

In the evening, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen condemned the “heinous attack” and expressed her condolences to the families of the victims.

Belgium has been the target of multiple terrorist attacks

Belgium has been the target of terrorist attacks several times in recent years. On March 22, 2016, three suicide bombers blew themselves up at the airport and in a subway station in the capital Brussels. 35 people were killed and almost 700 others were injured. The terrorist militia Islamic State (IS) claimed responsibility for the crimes.

In November 2022, also in Brussels, a man armed with a knife attacked two police officers, killing one of them and seriously injuring the other. The federal prosecutor’s office opened an investigation.

Are you grieving or mourns someone you know?

Offered handWorry Hotline, Tel. 143

Seelsorge.netOffered by the Reformed and Catholic Churches

Muslim pastoral careTel. 043 205 21 29

Jewish welfare, [email protected]

Lifewith.chfor affected siblings

Association Familientrauerbegleitung.ch

Rainbow Switzerland AssociationHelp for grieving families

For Youthadvice for children and young people, Tel. 147

For old ageadvising older people in difficult life situations

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2023-10-17 16:25:32
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