Belgium Detains 2 Suspects in Paris Attacks Probe

BRUSSELS (Reuters) -
Belgian soldiers and a police officer patrol in central Brussels, November 21, 2015, after security was tightened in Belgium following the fatal attacks in Paris. Belgium raised the alert status for its capital Brussels to the highest level on Saturday, shutting the metro and warning the public to avoid crowds because of a "serious and imminent" threat of an attack. REUTERS/Youssef Boudlal TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY (Newscom TagID: rtrlseven468194.jpg) [Photo via Newscom]
Belgian soldiers and a police officer patrol in central Brussels. (Reuters/Youssef Boudlal)

Belgium has arrested two men suspected of links to the Paris terror attacks on Nov. 13 in which 130 people were killed, the Belgian federal prosecutor’s office said in a statement on Thursday.

The two men, identified as Belgian national Zakaria J., born in 1986, and Moroccan national Mustafa E., born in 1981, were arrested during two house searches in the Brussels district of Molenbeek, prosecutors said.

“Both were arrested due to their possible ties with different suspects in this case,” the statement said. “The investigating judge will decide later today upon their possible further detention.”

No arms or explosives were found during the searches, it added.

Since the Paris terror attacks, federal prosecutors have already taken 10 people into custody over their suspected involvement, which appear to have been prepared mainly in Belgium.

If the two latest detainees are kept in custody, their number would rise to 12.

Last week, investigators said a number of the Paris terrorists used two apartments and a house in Belgium as possible safe houses in the weeks leading up to their coordinated shooting and suicide bomb assault on the French capital.

They also found a possible bomb factory for the Paris attacks in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek, with traces of explosives.