As we reported, on Friday, in a vicious shootout in the Molenbeek neighborhood of Brussels lead to the arrest of the mastermind behind the Paris attacks – Salah Abdeslam.
Shortly after the arrest, footage surfaced of Abdeslam being dragged by police in handcuffs after the arrest. Abdeslam was wearing a white hoodie pulled over his face.
Much like in the Paris attacks and the raids/shootouts that occurred all over the city in the hours and days following, there were numerous news cameras and smart phones filming just a block or two away.
Check out the footage here:
Here’s a recap of everything that went down on Friday, from our previous report:
According to reports, events began to unfold on Tuesday in the Forest neighborhood of Brussels, when police went on a normal search and interrupted a gathering of three men, one believed to have been Abdeslam. A full on raid followed, and during the chaos, Abdeslam escaped back into Brussels. His fingerprints were later found in the apartment.
Inside the apartment police found an ISIS banner, 11 Kalashnikov loaders and a great deal of ammo. 35 year old Mohamed Belkaid, was preparing to fire at officers when a police sniper shot him dead. Next to him was a book on Salafism, an extremist strand of Islam.
Belgian authorities initially said Belkaid had no known background in radical Islamic activities. But Friday afternoon, prosecutors issued a statement saying he was “most probably” an accomplice of Abdeslam who had been using a fake Belgian ID card in the name of Samir Bouzid.
A man using that ID card was one of the two men seen with Abdeslam in a rental car on the Hungarian-Austrian border in September.
Four days after the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, the same false ID card was used to transfer 750 euros ($847) to Hasna Ait Boulahcen, Abaaoud’s niece. Both Ait Boulahcen and Abaaoud died afterward in a police siege.
This lead to the raids on Friday, in which police say two men inside the building were hurt, and an additional four police officers were slightly injured. Here’s what the Daily Mail had to say:
TV cameras filmed a series of explosions and the sound of fresh gunfire in the area at around 6.20pm, more than two hours after the arrest, as police continued to search for suspects after Abdeslam war arrested.
After escaping another besieged flat on Tuesday, he was tracked to a home in Molenbeek this afternoon. Special forces are understood to have been monitoring the house for at least 48 hours.
It is understood grenades were used in the operation, which unfolded at about 4.30pm.
Gun shots and explosions were heard while white smoke was seen in the area as police moved in on Abdeslam, who had been on the run for 126 days.
Emergency services were quick to arrive at the scene which was shut down by officers wearing heavy riot gear.
Abdeslam was wounded, and then retreated into a house in Molenbeek with two men. At least one of the other men is wounded, and one may be dead, said the source.
He and another wounded suspect were taken to the city’s Saint Pierre Hospital which was last night sealed off behind a security perimeter.
A lawyer for the families of those who lost their lives in the Paris massacre have demanded that he is extradited to France immediately.
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel rushed out of an EU summit to head back to Brussels when events began to unfold.
In a now deleted tweet, Belgium’s Secretary of State for Migration Theo Francken said: “We got him.”