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Brussels attacks: Explosions heard in Schaerbeek during Belgian police operation

One person has been neutralised: Schaerbeek mayor Bernard Clerfayt

Published 25/03/2016

Police guard a check point and man positions during a police raid in the suburb of Schaerbeek in Brussels, early Friday, March, 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
Police guard a check point and man positions during a police raid in the suburb of Schaerbeek in Brussels, early Friday, March, 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
Police take up positions on a road as they guard check points during a police raid in the suburb of Schaerbeek in Brussels, Thursday, March, 24, 2016. Belgium's prime minister refused to accept the resignations of his justice and interior ministers Thursday despite increasing evidence of intelligence and law enforcement failures to prevent this week's suicide bombings by Islamic militants. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
Police man a check point during a police raid in the suburb of Schaerbeek in Brussels, Thursday, March, 24, 2016. Belgium's prime minister refused to accept the resignations of his justice and interior ministers Thursday despite increasing evidence of intelligence and law enforcement failures to prevent this week's suicide bombings by Islamic militants. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
A policeman in white overalls leaves a house that has been the subject of a police raid in the suburb of Schaerbeek in Brussels, Friday, March, 25, 2016. Belgium's prime minister refused to accept the resignations of his justice and interior ministers Thursday despite increasing evidence of intelligence and law enforcement failures to prevent this week's suicide bombings by Islamic militants. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
Police guard a check point during a police raid in the suburb of Schaerbeek in Brussels, Thursday, March, 24, 2016. Belgium's prime minister refused to accept the resignations of his justice and interior ministers Thursday despite increasing evidence of intelligence and law enforcement failures to prevent this week's suicide bombings by Islamic militants. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
Police officers take part in an operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
A man uses a mobile phone as a police officer stand guards in the security perimeter during a police operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
A picture taken late on March 24, 2016 shows a police operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
Police officers take part in an operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
Police officers take part in an operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
Police officers take part in an operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
Police officers take part in an operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
Police officers take part in an operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
Police officers take part in an operation in Schaerbeek - Schaarbeek, Brussels, late on March 24, 2016. Six people were arrested on March 24, 2016 in a series of police operations in the Belgian capital, the federal prosecutor's office said, two days after jihadist attacks in Brussels left 31 dead. Raids have also taken place in the Brussels district of Schaerbeek where the three airport attackers left from on March 22 morning carrying three explosive-packed suitcases. There have been no arrests in the neighbourhood. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images

Belgian state media reported that two explosions have been heard and one person has been detained in police raids in the Brussels neighbourhood of Schaerbeek.

It is not clear whether the raids are linked to the investigation into the Brussels attacks.

State broadcaster RTBF said multiple police operations are under way in Schaerbeek, and one person has been detained. It says one explosion was heard at the start of the operation and cited witnesses describing gunfire.

Two explosions were heard as police carried out more raids in a Brussels neighbourhood on Friday, Belgian state media reported.

One man was reported to have been detained as Belgian authorities carried out multiple operations following the terror attacks on Tuesday at Brussels airport and the Metro in which 31 people died and 270 were injured

At least one suspect in the city attacks is at large, and it is unclear whether there were other accomplices.

Six people were detained on Thursday after raids targeted central Brussels, Jette and the Schaerbeek neighbourhoods, where police earlier found a huge stash of explosives and bomb-making material in an apartment used by the attackers.

Prosecutors are expected to decide later on Friday whether to charge or release those detained

State broadcaster RTBF said several police operations were under way in Schaerbeek on Friday, and one person has been detained.

It said one explosion was heard at the start of the operation and cited witnesses describing gunfire.

A witness told RTBF they heard two blasts and shots from heavy weapons during the police raid.

A third blast was later reported from the neighbourhood.

AP reporters at the scene described hearing a new blast, though it was unclear whether it was a controlled police detonation.

About 50 officers appear to be involved in the operation.

Schaerbeek mayor Bernard Clerfayt told RTBF that one person was "neutralised" in the ongoing police operation in his district.

He did not say whether that meant the person was arrested or wounded.

He confirmed the raid is linked to the investigation into this week's suicide bombings.

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel dropped out of a wreath-laying ceremony at Brussels airport with US Secretary of State John Kerry because of the ongoing police operation.

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