Belgium national team cancel training session after Brussels explosions
The Belgium national team have cancelled their scheduled training session following explosions at Brussels airport and on the city's metro network on Tuesday morning, the country's football federation has confirmed.
At least 31 people have been killed in explosions in the departure hall at the Brussels airport, police said.
There have been 2 explosions at the airport. Building is being evacuated. Don't come to the airport area.- Brussels Airport (@BrusselsAirport) March 22, 2016
All flights have been cancelled, while arriving planes have been diverted and Belgium's terror alert level raised to maximum. Security also has been tightened at all Paris airports.
The Royal Belgian Football Federation (KBVB) said via its Twitter account for the national team that "football is not important today" and that their thoughts were with the victims as they cancelled their training session ahead of the friendly with Portugal on March 29.
#tousensemble, our thoughts are with the victims. Football is not important today. Training cancelled.- BelgianRedDevils (@BelRedDevils) March 22, 2016
Later, Norwich City released a statement confirming that striker Dieumerci Mbokani was at Zaventem Airport during the explosions but was "unharmed but shaken."
The Canaries said the 30-year-old Congo international Mbokani was "unharmed but shaken" and had returned home to be with his family.
The explosions happened only days after Salah Abdeslam, the prime suspect in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks that killed 130 people, was arrested in Brussels. Days after those attacks, Belgium cancelled their planned friendly with Spain.
French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve called the deadly explosions a reminder that a "very high security level" will be required during this year's European Championship in France.
On Tuesday, Cazeneuve told media in Paris that everything will be put in place during the tournament from June 10-July 10 to guarantee "collective security."
Tournament organisers had already strengthened security measures and made changes to fan zones.
Cazeneuve said the state will contribute up to €2 million ($1.1m) for video surveillance in the designated areas for the public.
Cazeneuve said Euro 2016 should bring "sportsmanship, festivities and security for teams, accompanying staff and spectators."
UEFA have said it will take "all necessary measures" to ensure Euro 2016 is a safe and secure tournament.
"Following today's events in Brussels UEFA wishes to reaffirm its commitment in placing safety and security at the centre of its organisational plans for UEFA Euro 2016," said a statement. "EURO 2016 SAS and all stakeholders involved in the organisation of the tournament will continue their joint work and will regularly monitor the level of risk for the tournament and their respective organisational plans.
"For over three years now EURO 2016 SAS has been working closely with the relevant authorities to develop the most appropriate mechanisms in order to guarantee a safe and secure tournament and all necessary measures are being taken to ensure that is the case for all involved."
Bosnia-Herzegovina coach Mehmed Bazdarevic called on UEFA to cancel all of the upcoming friendlies matches in the wake of attacks.
"To be honest, it would be the best for all if we don't play against Luxembourg and Switzerland," he told reporters. "UEFA, for safety, must postpone all friendlies this and next week.
"Who cares about football after these terrible scenes in Brussels? This is horrible."
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.