'A Soldier of the Islamic State': ISIS Claims Brussels Knife Attack

Man who attacked two soldiers in Brussels shouted 'Allahu Akbar' twice during attack

TOPSHOT - This screengrab shows police officials and a soldier looking at a man on the pavement in the city centre of Brussels on August 25, 2017, where a man is alleged to have attacked soldiers with a knife and was shot.
 / AFP PHOTO / Belga / STR / Belgium OUT
STR/AFP

The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for a knife attack on soldiers in the Belgian capital of Brussels on Friday, the group's Amaq news agency said on Saturday.

"The executor of the stabbing operation in Brussels is a soldier of the Islamic State and carried out the operation in response to calls for attacks against coalition states," Amaq said, referring to a U.S.-led coalition fighting the Sunni militant group.

A spokeswoman for federal prosecutors said the man who attacked the two soldiers had shouted "Allahu Akbar" (Arabic for "God is Great") twice during the attack.

Belgian Federal Police spokesman, Jonathan Pfunde reported earlier that "a man armed with a knife attacked a group of soldiers. The soldiers fired at him and neutralized the individual."

Associated Press television images from central Brussels showed that police sealed off a main street not far from the Belgian capital's main Grand Place tourist attraction.

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel tweeted: "All our support is with our soldiers. Our security services remain on alert. We are following the situation closely."

The soldiers sustained light injuries.

Belgium has been on high alert since suicide bombers killed 32 people in attacks on March 22, 2016 on the Brussels main airport and subway system.