At least 28 people have been killed in terror attacks at the Brussels airport and subway system today. Here in NYC, the NYPD says it will boost its presence in response to the violence.
NYPD spokesman Stephen Davis released this statement this morning:
The New York City Police Department is closely monitoring the situation in Belgium and is in close contact with our international partners and with the FBI. Until we learn more, the department has deployed additional counterterrorism resources across the city including: the Counterterrorism Response Command (CRC), the Strategic Response Group (SRG), and Hercules Teams. These teams have been deployed to crowded areas and transit locations around the city out of an abundance of caution to provide police presence and public reassurance as we closely follow the developing situation overseas.
At this time, there is no known indication that the attack has any nexus to New York City. We will continue to follow the situation in Belgium closely with the Joint Terrorism Task Force and the FBI and adjust the department’s deployments accordingly.
These attacks come at a time when the federal government has proposed cutting terrorism funding to New York City by roughly 90 million dollars. Any cut in terrorism funding to New York—to what is widely recognized as the nation’s top terror target—would be irresponsible.
Two explosions—one believed to be a suicide bombing—occurred in the departure hall of the airport in the Belgian capital. CNN reports, " A blast happened there outside the security checkpoints for ticketed passengers and near the airline check-in counters, an airline official briefed on the situation said." A passenger told French television, "It was atrocious. The ceilings collapsed. There was blood everywhere, injured people, bags everywhere. We were walking in the debris. It was a war scene."
— Jamal Ikazban (@ikazban) March 22, 2016
Media reports say that 13 have died there, with dozens other wounded. The airport was shut down and flights to Brussels have been diverted.
Another explosion occured in the Maelbeek subway station, "not far from the area that houses most of the European Union’s core institutions." Fifteen people were killed and 55 were wounded, according to the Brussels Metro Authority, which shut down the subway system. Eurostar trains to and from Brussels have also been cancelled.
One Brussels resident said to CNN, "I think, after the Paris attacks, we were assuming like this would happen. And it was a matter of time."