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BRUSSELS SCHOOLS REOPEN, MANHUNT ONGOING FOR PARIS SUSPECTS



 As police armed with automatic weapons stood guard, schools and some subway stations in the Belgian capital reopened Wednesday for the first time since emergency measures were imposed four days ago in the wake of the Paris attacks.

Belgian and French authorities continued a manhunt for at least two suspects believed directly linked to the killings in Paris, while France’s lower house of parliament voted overwhelmingly, by 515 votes in favor to four against, to continue airstrikes against Islamic State group targets in Syria beyond early January.

Parliament’s upper house, the Senate, was expected to vote on the measure later Wednesday.

The IS group claimed responsibility for the Nov. 13 attacks, which killed 130 people and wounded hundreds more in Paris.

About half of all subway stations in Brussels were operating for the first time since the weekend. Despite the easing of restrictions, Brussels _ home to the European Union and NATO headquarters _ remained under the highest alert level due to what authorities have described as a serious and imminent threat of attack. Emergency measures had shut down shops, schools and subways in the city since Saturday.

The threat alert level is expected to remain at that level until at least Monday, barring a major development such as the arrest of suspects in the Paris attacks. The Belgian government has also ordered health and emergency services to take precautionary measures to ensure their services aren’t infiltrated by extremists.

Friday 11 December, 2015


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