Serious shortcomings have been revealed in the work of European law-enforcement authorities following Brussels terrorist attacks, German newspaper Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten (DWN) wrote.
One of the suicide bombers responsible for the recent terrorist attacks in Brussels Airport, Ibrahim El Bakraoui, was reportedly expelled by Turkey to the Netherlands on July 14, 2015.
“The Turkish authorities had put him into a plane en route from Istanbul to Amsterdam together with an unnamed German,” the newspaper wrote, citing the words of Dutch Minister of Justice Ard van der Steur.
The Dutch authorities said they had not been aware of Bakraoui’s expulsion, although the Turkish authorities claimed they informed the Dutch Embassy in Ankara via email. The email was allegedly classified as “very urgent” and is unlikely to have contained any relevant data on the issue, the article said.
According to the newspaper, El Bakraoui had not been registered in any databases of the Dutch or international investigators and thus law-enforcement authorities had no reason to arrest him.
What is however known is that El Bakraoui was sentenced in Belgium in 2010 to a long prison term and was freed on parole. Should he have served his sentence in a full amount, he would still be in prison and the Brussels attacks might not have happened.
According to Belgian Minister of Justice Koen Geens, the country’s authorities were informed about Bakraoui’s expulsion too late.
“We were first given a warning after the plane [with El Bakraoui] had landed in Schiphol,” Geens said.
The justification, however, looks quite unconvincing. The warning was made months before the attacks in Brussels and could have possibly prevented them if taken seriously, the article said.
Two blasts took place in the departure hall of the Brussels Zaventem international airport on Tuesday. Another explosion took place at the Maelbeek metro station near the European Union institutions.
Thirty-one people were killed and more than 300 were injured in the attacks. Responsibility for the attacks was claimed by the Daesh terrorist group, outlawed in many countries, including Russia and the United States.
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