Security Concerns Cancel Friendly Football Match Between Belgium, Spain

World » EU | November 17, 2015, Tuesday // 10:05
Bulgaria: Security Concerns Cancel Friendly Football Match Between Belgium, Spain Anti terrorist police enter in buidling of a street in Molenbeek, Brussels, Belgium, 16 November 2015. Photo: EPA

The friendly football match between Belgium and Spain, which was scheduled to take place at the King Baudouin stadium in Brussels on Tuesday evening, was cancelled due to security concerns following the attacks in Paris on Friday.

The attacks at six sites across the French capital claimed the lives of 129 people and left hundreds injured.

One of the attacks, which involved three suicide bombers blowing themselves up, occurred outside the Stade de France stadium while a friendly football match between France and Germany was taking place.

One of the attackers was prevented from entering the stadium after a routine security check had detected he was in the possession of explosives.

French prosecutors have identified a Belgian as the mastermind of the attacks, while a Brussels-born has been sought as a key suspect.

The Belgian government raised the terror threat level to three on Monday, which indicates a serious threat, the BBC informs.

The Royal Belgian Football Association took the decision to cancel the match after taking into account the exceptional circumstances and holding consultation with its Spanish counterpart.

Authorities have identified Salah Abdeslam, a 26-year-old born in Brussels, as a key suspect in the attacks.

A large-scale manhunt has been conducted in Belgium and France for suspected perpetrators of the attacks and alleged accomplices.

Massive raids were carried out in the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek, which is known as a breeding ground for jihadists.

Two other friendly football matches, which were under question over security concern, will be held as scheduled on Tuesday.

The French Football Federation decided to go ahead with the match against England at Wembley in London.

The encounter between Germany and the Netherlands in Hanover will also take place, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel expected to be present at the stadium.

Security measures have been heightened across Europe after the attacks, with the EU having tightened the control at its external borders.

Being an external border of the EU, Bulgaria has also heightened its security measures.

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Tags: Brussels, terror, security, stadium, Stade de France, attack, Paris, Bulgaria, France, Belgium, EU, Molenbeek
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