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IS claims Brussels knife attacker is one of their own

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Police secure the scene in downtown Brussels after a reported attack on Belgian Army soldiers on Friday.

BRUSSELS >> The Islamic State news agency Aamaq has claimed the Brussels attacker who assaulted three soldiers with a knife as an Islamic State group soldier.

In a statement Sunday, it said he carried out the Friday evening attack in response to calls to target countries of the coalition that is fighting IS.

Belgian prosecutors have opened an attempted terrorist murder probe after attacker assaulted the soldiers while shouting “Allahu akbar!” — Arabic for “God is great.” He was shot dead by troops.

The Federal Prosecutor’s Office said the man was known to police for assault charges but had no previous terror-related offenses. The suspect, a Belgian citizen of Somali origin, was also carrying a fake firearm and copies of the Quran.

IS often claims attacks by people who have no known link to the group.

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