Would that this Daily Mail article were an April Fools joke. (The story was earlier reported by the Belgian press in French and in Dutch. I tweeted the coverage in Le Soir.)
In an astonishing open letter, the officers said they have warned about the terrorist sympathisers whose security badges give them access to planes, but they remain employed.
The airport police, who are threatening to go on strike because of security deficiencies, also said they have raised the issue of terrorists scouting the airport to plan possible attacks.
Police at Brussels airport have claimed at least 50 Islamic State supporters are working there as baggage handlers, cleaners and catering staff. […]
The extraordinary claims come after the Mail reported how the family of two of the bombers involved in the attacks last week said they had worked as cleaners at the airport.[…]
The officers said they had raised suspicions about certain staff members including those who apparently celebrated after the Paris attacks in November that killed 130 people.
‘When we checked these people, we were surprised more than once. It was men with a radical ideology and a long police history,’ the officers continued.
‘Even today, there are at least 50 supporters of the Islamic state who work at the airport. They have a security badge and have access to the cockpit of a plane.
And get this:
An uncle of Ibrahim and Khalid el-Bakraoui last week told how the brothers had been employed at the airport and would have gained intimate knowledge of the terminal destroyed in the carnage.
The man, who asked not to be named, told the Mail: ‘They worked cleaning at the airport and in a restaurant. They didn’t finish high school in the end. They cleaned the airport in the summer months.’
Read the whole thing and weep: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3517493/At-FIFTY-ISIS-supporters-working-baggage-handlers-cleaners-catering-staff-Brussels-airport-claim-police.html#ixzz44apMn9HM
It is high time to bring back the “pole of shame” (schandpaal), the Belgian equivalent of the pillory. On second thought, perhaps the Schwedentrunk would be more fitting…