Brussels Attacks: What We Know So Far

Here is what we know so far about the Brussels attacks that left 34 people dead and sparked a major cross-European manhunt.

THE ATTACKS

:: The three suspected attackers are driven to the city’s Zaventem Airport in a taxi

:: They all have bombs in their bags, which they load on luggage trollies and head towards the security gate

:: Around 7am GMT, shots are fired as the attackers shout in Arabic, according to local media reports.

:: Moments later, twin blasts rip through the airport’s departure hall killing at least 14 people

:: The first bomb went off near a counter where customers pay for overweight baggage, the second was near a Starbucks

:: An hour later, a bomb explodes on a train at Maalbeek metro station – near EU headquarters

:: The blast hit as the train, packed with morning commuters, left the platform – at least 20 were killed

THE SECURITY OPERATION

:: At 10am GMT, local residents are told to stay indoors and public transport systems are halted

:: The lockdown remained in place for about five hours

:: Police found a third bomb at Zaventem Airport. It was “neutralised with a controlled action”

:: One or two Kalashnikov rifles were also found at the airport, according to Belgian media

:: Reports said one Kalashnikov assault rifle was found next to the body of the attacker

THE RAIDS

:: Police raids took place across the country throughout Tuesday afternoon

:: Police found a nail bomb in an apartment in the northern Brussels neighbourhood of Schaerbeek

:: Investigators also found chemical products and an Islamic State flag.

:: Private broadcaster VTM said police went to the area after a tip-off from the taxi driver who reportedly dropped off the suspected Zaventem Airport attackers

:: The driver said he became suspicious when they did not let him touch their baggage

THE SUSPECTS

:: Islamic State has issued two statements claiming responsibility for both attacks

:: CCTV footage from Zaventem Airport shows the three suspects walking through the airport shortly before the attacks

:: The two pictured in black are both wearing gloves on their left hand, possibly to hide detonators

:: The two suspects, pictured in black died at the scene, according to Belgian Prosecutor Eric van der Sypt

:: The third man, pictured in white, fled the scene after his bomb did not go off, the prosecutor said

:: Little is yet known about the attacker or attackers behind the Maalbeek metro station attack

:: It is not yet known whether if there are links to the arrest of the Paris attacker Salah Abdeslam in Brussels last week

THE MANHUNT

:: A government official said the third Zaventem suspect was seen running away from the airport building

:: He is described as young, wearing a thick light-coloured jacket with a black hat and glasses

:: German media reports suggest he may be trying to reach Germany, although that is not yet confirmed.

POLICE APPEALS

:: Police are asking any witnesses who may have caught they attacks on camera to come forward

:: They particularly interested in footage which may have the suspected attackers in view

Credit:Sky News