5 facts you need to know about the Brussels’ ISIS terrorist on the run

Najim Laachraoui

5. His DNA was found on explosives used during Paris attacks

Najim Laachraoui was allegedly captured on CCTV pushing a third bomb at the Brussels airport.
Najim Laachraoui was allegedly captured on CCTV pushing a third bomb at the Brussels airport.

Najim Laachraoui is thought to be the mastermind ISIS bomb maker responsible for making the suicide vests that the two brothers used in the Brussels attack.

His DNA was also found at two homes in Belgium after being searched by authorities in the months after the Paris attacks.
Authorities found traces of the explosive TATP which has been widely used by ISIS. This is the same explosive the “shoe bomber” attempted to use on a Paris-to-Miami flight after 9/11.

4. He studied electromechanical engineering in Belgium

Institut de la Sainte-Famille d’Helmet
Institut de la Sainte-Famille d’Helmet

According to an alumni newsletter, Laachraoui studied electromechanical engineering at a Catholic high school (Institut de la Sainte-Famille d’Helmet) in Belgium.
The NYTimes reports, that an official confirmed that he graduated from the school in 2009 and the school never had any problems with him as a student.

3. He secretly traveled to Syria, Hungary and Austria with an alias

According to the Belgian prosecutor’s office Laachraoui traveled to Syria in Febraury of 2013.

According to CNN, he also traveled to Hungary with Salah Abdeslam – who was arrested during a battle with police on Friday – in September of last year.
He has apparently been using the alias Soufiane Kayal and successfully crossed into Austria from Hungary while using it.

2. Two brothers on the run from raid last week were the suicide bombers in Brussels attack

Brussels brothers

Khalid, 27, and Brahim El Bakraouiand, 30, are allegedly the men seen on surveillance footage with Laachraoui at the Brussels airport before the bombing.

An Algerian immigrant with ties to ISIS was killed during the police raid last Friday but the brothers were not found.  They are suspected of blowing themselves up while detonating suitcase bombs with concealed triggers worn in their gloves.

1. Police found an ISIS flag, bomb, and chemicals in an apartment raid after the attack

Belgian federal prosecutors said investigators found an explosive device containing nails, “chemical products” and an ISIS flag during a raid after the bombings, according to the Associated Press.

ISIS issued a statement claiming responsibility of the attack:

“Islamic State fighters carried out a series of bombings with explosive belts and devices on Tuesday, targeting an airport and a central metro station in the center of the Belgian capital Brussels, a country participating in the international coalition against the Islamic State.”

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