Brussels declares three days of mourning

Three explosions took place in Brussels yesterday; two at the airport & one at the Maalbeek train station.

A security perimeter has been set, on 22 March, 2016 near Maalbeek metro station in Brussels, after a blast at this station near the EU institutions caused deaths and injuries. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - As Brussels officials hunt for a suspect from yesterday's terrorist attacks, the airport where two of the blasts occurred will remain shut today.

The Islamic State suspect was seen on the airport's CCTV with two supposed suicide bombers shortly before the first of two attacks that also hit Brussel's metro, killing at least 30 and wounding over 200.

Officials have urged people in the Belgian capital to be vigilant while some other countries like Britain are warning their citizens against travel to the city for all but essential reasons.

Brussels Airlines, which serves many citizens across Europe, has cancelled its services for at least the next two days.

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The country will observe a minute's silence at midday, which is 1pm South African time, and has declared three days of mourning.

The country's Prime Minister Charles Michel is to hold an extraordinary cabinet meeting today and has already tightened security around the capital and in particular its major transport hubs.

The city will try to get back to work today, but with so much of the transport system shut down, commuters will face a nerving struggle getting into and out from work.

Vigils have been held in Brussels and around the world to honour the victims.

At the same time, South African students studying in Brussels have spoken of their fear after yesterday's terror attacks.

Tshikovhi Ndivhuho is a student at the University of Brussels.

She said, "You can tell that everybody is still in panic mode. I'm not sure if I should stay here longer, and if I go home, how am I going to go home?"

Meanwhile, the International Relations Department says its employees at the South African embassy in Brussels are in constant contact with its Pretoria office about developments there.

Spokesperson Nelson Kgwete says, "The embassy in Brussels is closely monitoring developments and will report to Pretoria as soon as information is available on the well-being of South African citizens there."

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