The “March Against Fear” rally, planned to encourage solidarity in response to the Brussels terror attacks, has been postponed due to fears it might hamper security efforts. A possible suspect has been released due to lack of evidence.
The organizers of the rally were asked by authorities to postpone the event, which was to be held on Sunday afternoon in Brussels, due to security concerns.
The “March Against Fear” rally was set to encourage solidarity among the Belgian people following the deadly terrorist attacks at Brussels Airport last Tuesday that killed 31 people and injured many more. Organizers said the rally would show that the city of Brussels — and the country as a whole — refused to be intimidated by terrorism.
As reported by Agence France Press, a statement by the organizers following the Brussels terror attacks read “This week, we, Belgian citizens have been attacked, in how we live, our customs, our rights, our liberty.”
“The first reaction in such events is to withdraw but on reflection, fear must give way to hope and the defense of our values.”
However, Mayor Yvan Mayeur asked the organizers to postpone the rally until a later date, citing security concerns and the fact that the march may interfere with the ongoing investigation into the terror attacks at Brussels airport and the metro stations.
“Let us allow the security services to do their work and that the march — which we, too, want to take part in — be delayed for several weeks.”
As reported by Washington Times, after the press conference, the organizers of the March Against Fear rally in Brussels said in a statement that they would postpone the event, stressing that “the security of our citizens is an absolute priority.”
“Consequently, we completely join the authorities in their proposal to postpone to a later date. We thus ask citizens to not come this Sunday to Brussels,” the statement added.
The “March Against Fear” was due to begin at 2:00 p.m. local time at the central Place de La Bourse, which has been turned into a shrine to the victims and is carpeted with flowers and tributes to those lost and injured in the Brussels attacks.
In lieu of the rally, marchers linked arms in a moment of silence around the gathered tributes in the Place de La Bourse, pictured above and below.
— Brett Mason (@BrettMasonNews) March 27, 2016
Belgium and other countries in the European bloc have been ramping up security in the wake of Tuesday’s deadly attacks.
Meanwhile, as reported by the Daily Mail, a suspect that was arrested by Belgian police over the weekend, suspected of being involved with the terrorists in the Brussels Airport attacks, has now been released.
The man was Faycal Cheffou, a journalist who was suspected of being a person of interest in the attacks, captured in CCTV footage walking alongside bombers Ibrahim El-Bakraoui and Najim Laachraoui.
According to prosecutors they do not have sufficient evidence to justify holding Cheffou and the terror accomplice is thought to be still at large.
— Daily Mail Online (@MailOnline) March 28, 2016
In other news relating to the terror attacks in Belgium, the International Business Times reports that a security guard, employed at a nuclear power plant, was murdered and his security pass stolen just days after the coordinated suicide bomb attacks at the Brussels International Airport and on the metro.
Quoting the French language Derniere Heure newspaper, they reported that the suicide bombers who attacked in Brussels were originally planning to target a nuclear site, but after several suspect militants were arrested, they moved up their plans.
Reportedly, the security guard was killed while walking his dog in the Belgian city of Charleroi and his security badge was stolen. The security pass has since been cancelled.
— The Telegraph (@Telegraph) March 26, 2016
While Brussels and Belgium as a whole are on high alert, the report raised fears that militants are seeking to get their hands on nuclear material or alternatively are planning to attack a nuclear site in the country.
Reportedly, France has also stepped up security at several of its nuclear power plants and workers are being screened for Islamist sympathies.
[Photo by Sylvain Lefevre/Getty Images]