A car drove at high speed into a group of Belgian carnival performers preparing a parade early Sunday, killing six people and seriously injuring ten others, authorities said, saying the incident was not a militant attack.
At this time there is no evidence that the attack had a terrorist motive,” prosecutor Damien Verheyen said at a news conference. Police denied media reports that the car was involved in a high-speed chase.
The incident happened around 04:00 GMT in the southern Belgian village of Strepy-Bracquegnies.
Jacques Gobert, mayor of the neighboring town of La Louviere, said between 150 and 200 people had gathered to prepare for the annual folklore parade, complete with costumes and drums, when the vehicle appeared.
“A speeding car drove into the crowd … The driver then drove on,” Gobert said.
The two drivers of the car, which was later intercepted, were arrested. Police said they were residents in their 30s who were previously unknown to police.
Belgium has been trying to trace people suspected of militant connections for the past seven years. A Brussels-based IS cell was involved in attacks in Paris in 2015 that killed 130 people and in Brussels in 2016 that killed 32 people.
Ramming vehicles into crowds has become an increasingly common weapon used by militants in Europe and white supremacists in the United States because such attacks are inexpensive, easy to orchestrate and difficult for authorities to prevent, experts say.
https://www.independent.ie/world-news/europe/six-dead-after-car-drives-into-group-at-high-speed-in-belgium-41467683.html Six dead after car drove into group at high speed in Belgium