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22-03-2016

Heightened security at European Parliament

The European Parliament has raised its alert level in Brussels to orange and heightened security in close cooperation with the Belgian authorities, following the terror attacks in Brussels on Tuesday. Staff have been requested to stay inside where they are until further notice. The Parliament remains open, but the visitors' entrance and the Parlamentarium have been closed.

The President has decided to ask staff to telework tomorrow and to close all Parliament buildings in Brussels with the exception of the main building, which will remain accessible but which will be further secured through systematic checks of ID documents and bags.

Also, all missions, meetings and visits scheduled for this afternoon and tomorrow have been cancelled.

European Parliament President Martin Schulz issued the following statement:

"I am horrified by the despicable and cowardly attacks which took place in Brussels today. My thoughts go out first and foremost to the victims and the wounded, as well as their families and friends.

These acts anger and sadden me at the same time. They are born from barbarism and hatred which do justice to nothing and no one.

Brussels, like other cities hit by such terrorist attacks, will stand strong, and the European institutions hosted so generously by the Brussels institutions and its inhabitants will do likewise.

In the name of the European Parliament I have expressed to the Belgian Prime Minister my compassion and solidarity towards the Belgian people."